Monday was no ordinary day. Hiltrun had arrived on Sunday afternoon and we released 2 penguins. She cleared an area at Barracouta Bay for a new nest while I watered the trees – yes, we are still dry!
On Monday morning the man arrived to install the heat pump. It took him most of the day and he stuck at it as we came and went with penguin stuff. I was contacted by the Council about the building permit, Assure Quality about the bees and Marian about the meat.
Hiltrun and I planted a new penguin nest box in the area that she had cleared, along with 5 tree circles to create a private area so the penguins will nest there in their new home. The site was selected because a pair of penguins had moulted there and there was a flat space near a penguin path. We will put the trees into the circles when we have had some rain.
In the afternoon some Facebook friends from Japan came to visit. Akiko was not confident to drive on New Zealand roads as this was her first visit so they had a Japanese driver from Dunedin who Hiltrun has known for many years. He commented that he had been here before and was appalled at the tourist behaviour. They expected that we would be down the hill every afternoon protecting the penguins, but of course that would be impossible as well as deeply upsetting. I explained that I clear the reserve after it has closed and that is all I can cope with.
On Tuesday morning 3 of the chicks were started on their soft release and one was let go. All of this penguin movement results in a heap of dirty mats and sacks so the rest of the day was spent with the water blaster at full speed. We now have 3 penguins in care.
Thursday was glorious – just right for removing the Varroa strips from all of the bee hives. 3 of the 4 apiaries are looking very strong so that means they will be OK until I treat the Varroa again in the spring. I will feed the other site with old honey to keep them going over winter.
Have a great week!