Who are Western Bay Wildlife Trust?

Western Bay Wildlife Trust is a not for profit conservation organisation dedicated to the protection of wildlife and native ecosystems in the Western Bay of Plenty Region. The trust has a strong focus on monitoring the korora (little blue penguin) and oi (grey-faced petrel) populations based in Mount Maunganui. Education and advocacy through hands on involvement are core objectives, to encourage and inspire community ownership of our native biodiversity and safeguard it for the future.

Our Team

Chair - Melissa McLuskie

Melissa joined the penguin team in 2014 whilst undertaking her Bachelor of Biological Sciences and Animal Behaviour. She has worked with a diverse range of animals through wildlife veterinary nursing and zookeeping and is now driven to protect and enhance the lives of wildlife and reduce human-wildlife conflict. 

Trustee - Julia Graham

Bachelor of Applied Science Environmental Management, Penguin Researcher, Wildlife Responder Maritime NZ – Rena crisis, Team Leader Mount Penguin Monitoring. Former Chairperson WBWT

Trustee - Paul Cuming

Paul comes from a background of seabird research. In his spare time, he has spent a little under 30 years studying the Grey-faced Petrel/Oi on Mauao. His other skills pertaining to all birds are identification, handling, capturing, measuring, banding [ringing],  and identifying their songs. He is also currently Regional Representative for BirdsNZ, a group fostering the study of birds, and helps with running courses for youth.

Trustee - Anna Wentsch

Anna comes to us with a diverse background in native species, pest control and vegetation management. She has been a key penguin monitoring volunteer since 2019 and goes above and beyond to get tasks done! She's also the leader of our Shorebird monitoring group and our Habitat Restoration Leader!

Trustee - Satsuki Takenouchi

Growing up in Japan, she has seen and experienced the impact of humans on the the natural environment. She soon developed a passion to help save the environment for future generations, which lead her to complete the Bachelor of Applied Science in Environmental Management at AUT. Satsuki joined the WBWT team following the Rena Oil Spill and has been a key monitoring team member ever since!

Trustee - Mark Clayson

Wildlife Responder Maritime NZ, Rena crisis – Mount Penguin Monitoring team member. Moturiki Island Pest Control Warrior

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