The road to Wellington

We drove to Wellington today via a wildlife reserve at Pukaha and Greytown which was recommended to us as worth a look.

Pukaha wildlife centre is a New Zealand reserve and breeding centre for e.g. Kiwis and a variety of other indigenous species which are threatened by our poor past management of the eco-system. 

It is of course, easy with the benefit of hindsight, but at some point someone thought introducing rabbits would be a good idea as a food source, the rabbits found themselves in a no predators environment and bred like rabbits do. Realising their error, the stoat was introduced to prey on and control the rabbits - this probably looked like the right thing to do at the time!   Sadly, the stoats found e.g. the kiwis much easier to catch and set about decimating their population instead of the rabbits.  There are other similar stories! 
There is now a contentious programme of poisoning the predators to preserve what is left of the original indigenous species.
Oh the joy of unintended consequences!

After that salutatory lesson we went to Greytown which was stuck in a time warp, in need of some TLC and reinvented itself as a boutique shopping/cafe/history lesson. The town is now an utter delight - well for tourists it is.  I did miss the photo opportunity of the century when a pristine Ford Thunderbird (1960s version) parked outside the shop we were in,  Mr & Mrs Kiwi and their teenage daughter climbed out, had a short discussion on who was going where and wandered off.  After a minute or so a Renault Clio went by, windows open, rap muzak blaring and two passengers (baseball hats etc) leaning out, rubbernecking the Thunderbird.  Oh the irony,  so who looks cool now I thought :-)

My blip is the road from Rimutaka summit as it makes its way South toward Wellington.  We arrived at ~17:00 on Friday evening ... a very different vibe to yesterday's stopping place!

A few of Greytown in the Flikr folder

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