Like the kiwi, the Maui dolphin is an important part of New Zealand’s natural heritage.
Maui dolphins are found only off the west coast of the North Island – nowhere else in the world. There are only about 63 adult Maui dolphins left – they are the smallest marine dolphin in the world and IUCN-listed as critically endangered.
These dolphins can be saved if the New Zealand Government supports affected fishers to move to dolphin-friendly methods of fishing and extends the ban on set netting and traditional trawling fishing to cover all of their known range. This requires a genuine sanctuary from Maunganui Bluff to the Whanganui River mouth, including harbours, out to 100 metres deep. Currently, less than half of their habitat is protected.
This is a conservation emergency requiring concerted and collaborative action.
You can help by reporting Maui dolphin sightings by:
• downloading the free sightings app (iPhone or android ) at wwf.org.nz/mauisapp
• phone 08004MAUIS or
• make your report at http://bit.ly/Mauidolphinreport
WWF-New Zealand is happy to support Maui Dolphin Day 2017, March 18.