Government 'out of touch' with saving kiwi

Government 'out of touch' with saving kiwi

The Treasury is accused of consigning the kiwi to extinction after revelations it advised against a rescue package for the bird.

Details of this year's Budget requests show Treasury did not approve spending more than $11million to reverse the decline in wild kiwi numbers.

Advisers said it did not align with the Government's priorities.

Labour's conservation spokeswoman Ruth Dyson wants to know how they decided that.

"This was a bid for a comparatively small amount of money. I don't imagine any minister would want to oversee the demise of our national symbol – our kiwi."

She says Treasury is out of touch with New Zealanders if it thinks saving the endangered bird isn't a priority.

Dyson is expected to quiz Finance Minister Bill English about Treasury's conclusions.

Wild kiwi numbers are declining at around 2 percent a year, and last year the Department of Conservation predicted they'd be extinct within 50 years unless action was taken.

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