Tag Archives: Kiwi

Kiwi found dead after an alleged shark attack in Australia | Instant News

New Zealand man Duncan Craw, pictured with wife Taylia and son Levi, is believed to have been killed by a shark in Australia. Photo / Provided

A New Zealand man was found dead after an alleged shark attack during a snorkeling trip in South Australia.

Duncan Craw’s Kiwi family said it was impossible to describe the hole a “cheerful, loving, helpful” and naughty man would leave in the lives of those he knows.

Relatives of the 32-year-old man said he moved to Australia from New Zealand at a young age before recently traveling to South Australia from his home in Warrnambool, Victoria, on a camping trip with his family.

However, while snorkeling in Port MacDonnell on a beautiful Thursday on a beautiful day, his wife Taylia lost her sight.

“The exact circumstances of Duncan’s disappearance are not yet known but given the discovery of a damaged wetsuit and sightings of the Great White in the area on Thursday, it appears that a shark was involved,” the family said in a statement.

His body has been found.

“Duncan loves to snorkel and accepts the dangers he may face at sea. He is very unlucky this time,” the statement said.

New Zealand’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade confirmed it had been contacted in connection with Craw’s death.

“The Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade has not yet been approached by Duncan Craw’s family for consular assistance,” said a spokesman for MFAT.

Craw is married and has a young son named Levi.

South Australian police inspector Campbell Hill told local media outlets that an emergency team was called to the scene around 5pm last Thursday.

“We were called to a reef break just outside Port MacDonnell where we were met there by the family,” Hill told reporters.

“The man could not be found and a large-scale search was initiated involving police officers, members of the water operations and air wing, local state emergency services and fisheries.

“There are also lots of locals helping with the search, standing on paddle boards and fishing boats, or standing on the beach with binoculars.”

A police helicopter spotted a Great White Shark in the area that night.

The next morning the search team finds a badly damaged wetsuit along with other equipment that Craw is known to have used.

“Unfortunately we have collected them all and it clearly describes a fatal shark attack,” said Hill.

Craw went missing just three days before his 33rd birthday.

He is described as a very hardworking and dedicated operations manager at an agricultural company in Warrnambool, where he grew up after moving from New Zealand at a young age.

“When he’s not farming, spending time with family, or working around the property he bought with his wife Taylia, he likes to meet friends and watch or play sports, including cricket for the Woolsthorpe Cricket Club,” his family said.

“He is also Levi’s best father and a beautiful husband and best friend to Tay, his high school sweetheart.”

“She is a cheerful, affectionate and helpful child. She is a good and brash brother to her sister. She is a fun, naughty and supportive partner who has a heart of gold.”

Craw’s death came when eight Australians were killed by sharks last year – the largest since 1929.

It also happened when 19-year-old Kaelah Marlow died at Bowentown Beach in New Zealand’s Bay of Plenty earlier this month.


image source

Covid 19 coronavirus: The adventures of Kiwi caregivers exploring the world are cut short | Instant News

Not even a world in a pandemic can stop Helena Power’s glamorous life circling the world.

While caring for and teaching the son of a London billionaire, the 26-year-old Kiwi spent most of 2020 riding private jets for retreats in Ibiza, Switzerland and Australia.

Then he caught Covid-19 in London in December.

Now his damaged lungs resemble those of a 20-year-old smoker, leaving him breathless and unable to leave the house. He spends up to 12 hours a day sleeping.

Twice he was hospitalized, each time he had spent the previous hours breathless.

By the time the ambulance arrived, he desperately needed help.

“I couldn’t stand or walk. I was so confused,” said Power.

At first he thought being young and fit would be enough to get back up quickly.

Instead, Auckland-raised Power now thinks his story is a timely reminder to New Zealanders that beyond their enchanted borders lies an alternative reality to a pandemic-torn world battling a new, highly contagious strain of Covid.

Ibiza style infinity pool.  Photo / Provided
Ibiza style infinity pool. Photo / Provided

British Prime Minister Boris Johnson yesterday warned the country new strains of the virus could be even deadlier from the original.

This has pushed the hospital to the brink. The National Health Service this week said coronavirus patients were treated every 30 seconds.

Young people are not immune either. Power’s three healthy young friends were beaten at the same time as him.

They are now recovering better from it, but all are still battling fatigue and most are suffering from worse initial symptoms.

Power said he is diligently following health guidelines and trying to avoid the virus.

He recently changed jobs and started a new family in London before they moved to Qatar.

Leaving Power in an apartment in front of London’s prestigious Hyde Park, the young Kiwi is waiting for his Qatari visa to arrive before flying to join them.

Twenty-six year old Kiwi Power Helena has spent more than a month battling the severe effects of Covid.  Photo / Provided
Twenty-six year old Kiwi Power Helena has spent more than a month battling the severe effects of Covid. Photo / Provided

But on December 17 he tested positive for Covid.

The 10-day mandatory quarantine in her apartment wasn’t so bad. He was tired, short of breath and lost his sense of taste and smell.

But then, 14 days after testing positive, he went out with a friend and started “having really bad breathing problems.”

After several hours of struggling to breathe, his friend called an ambulance.

At the hospital, the doctors do X-rays.

“They said my lungs were damaged by Covid,” said Power.

“Despite being 26 years old and never smoking – I don’t even drink alcohol – my lungs look like someone who’s been smoking for 20 years.”

She was then discharged, with instructions to stay on steroids, doing her best to look after herself and given an inhaler to inflate whenever she needed it.

Alone in her apartment in a sleep fog and exhausted with no one checking her in, she relies on a friend in Canada, who herself orders Uber Eats for her every day.

A day later, she got sick again and called another ambulance.

Helena Power hiking in Switzerland.  Photo / Provided
Helena Power hiking in Switzerland. Photo / Provided

Treat it well but as before, the gist of the doctor’s message is don’t come back unless you absolutely have to – “if you’re dying,” says Power.

Nearly all of the country’s hospitals were within their capacity, and Power knew friends waited eight to 12 hours for an ambulance to arrive.

Luckily, he had an uncle who lived an hour south of London with his family, who brought him in.

She said she still slept for hours, and just moving from room to room was tiring.

Returning for the doctor’s recent check-up, he asked what he could do to get better.

The doctor said the medical team didn’t know. They told him that his lungs “forgot how to work” but were expected to recover in two weeks to three months.

Medical workers see the same phenomenon in many other patients, including young people.

“Doctors say that right now the health team is focused on trying to keep people alive,” said Power.

Helena Power against Covid.  Photo / Provided
Helena Power against Covid. Photo / Provided

“Then, once they get to the point where everyone’s okay, they can better treat people with side effects.”

Billionaire Power’s former employer also suffered.

When the pandemic broke out in March, her employers immediately settled in Australia as a safe hiding place.

“My boss read the statistics about the virus and thought it was time to go, and he flew right away,” he said.

“For people like that, money is not an object, so we just choose a safe country, and he gets a big house on the Australian coast.”

They “chill out” there for several months before Europe begins to reopen during the Northern Hemisphere summer and the family moves again.

“We fly on private planes, and the houses we rent are all private – so for people who have enough money, you can keep traveling and stay safe.”

Ibiza and Switzerland were among the stops.

However, Covid finally infected Power’s employer, with tragic consequences for elderly family members.

Power, meanwhile, is still hoping to recover in time to take up his job in Qatar.

However, his constant illness made him doubtful. He also managed to secure a place in managed isolation in New Zealand during the end of February.

The opportunity to be at home with family support made him jump for joy – if not literally.

“I’m very lucky. I’ll be home in a month, which will give me enough time to work until I get to the plane,” he said.


image source

New Zealand’s best beaches: hidden gems | Instant News


Whale’s Bay, Tutukaka. Photo / Melinda Legg

The results are in! Today, our finalists are announced: 13 stunning Kiwi beaches chosen by you and the Travel team. Click here to see the result, and read about our 10 most popular beaches, and our three favorite wild cards.

But every New Zealander knows that some of our best stretches of sand are the hard to reach, the lesser known and the hidden gems.

Here are some of our favorite entries from readers who favored Aotearoa’s calmer coastline.

Don’t miss your chance to be crowned New Zealand’s Best Beach 2021. Please visit nzherald.co.nz/bestbeach to vote for your favorite from our finalists.

Pukehina Beach, Bay of Plenty

Pukehina Beach is the “hidden gem” of the Eastern Bay of Plenty coast. Outside of peak season, this small town of 200 people is a tightly knit community of fishermen and women, retirees and tangata whenua connected to the great Arawa waka. Beautiful beaches and beaches remind us of the old days. Many homes have been passed down from generation to generation, converted with just a touch of paint, perhaps a new deck. The cousins ​​slept all night in a bed that also housed longboards, surfcasters and kayaks. Aunts can be seen gathering kaimoana in the estuary, nannas and pop their fur babies for walks along the beach and meeting the local uncle – Hippi Pippi. From stunning sunsets to ever-changing coastal landscapes and a micro-climate of its own, Pukehina Beach with its soft white sand and turquoise waters is a truly unique Aotearoa beach experience.

Amber Stevens

Pukehina, Bay of Plenty.  Photo / Amber Stevens
Pukehina, Bay of Plenty. Photo / Amber Stevens

New Chums Beach, Coromandel Peninsula

Over the last 20+ years I’ve traveled with family and then friends, lots of picnics, lots of beach days, nights out, and some beach cricket games. The fact that you can’t drive out there weed out the crowd, and walking on it itself is spectacular! This is truly a magical part of NZ

Natalie Lions

New Friend, Coromandel.  Photo / Natalie Lions
New Friend, Coromandel. Photo / Natalie Lions

Whale Bay Beach, Tutukaka Beach, Northland

A 10-minute walk along the cliff-side gives you stunning views of the coves around Whale Bay. Once you go down the trail the beach itself has clear blue water (almost like the Maldives). Beautiful trees perfect for hammocks and small swings provide seclusion and shade, and small rock pools on either side for exploration. Among the famous beaches but with warmer water, it is a hidden gem. It is a must.

Melinda Legg

Whale's Bay, Tutukaka.  Photo / Melinda Legg
Whale’s Bay, Tutukaka. Photo / Melinda Legg

Kariaotahi Beach, South Auckland

I’ve been lifeguard for this beach for eight seasons now and been a part of junior surfing since I was 7 years old (now 21). From the experiences I have had from this beach during my time as part of this wonderful community and nature, I can safely say that it is by far the best beach in Auckland and the country.

Taylor Harvey

Karioitahi Beach, South Auckland.  Photo / Taylor Harvey
Karioitahi Beach, South Auckland. Photo / Taylor Harvey

Amodeo Bay, Coromandel

Our special slice of heaven. We first came here on our honeymoon nearly 16 years ago and have never stopped returning. It is rugged and far enough away to be quiet, so not overcrowded, and has the most amazing sunsets, and the best fishing spots are not far from the coast. This is truly a Kiwi experience. There is a river flowed by the ocean where there are many pet eels that you can feed and pat with your hands. It is surrounded by native bush and on quiet nights you can hear kiwis.

Karen Bates

Amodeo Bay, Coromandel.  Photo / Karen Bates
Amodeo Bay, Coromandel. Photo / Karen Bates

Taupō Bay, Far North

It’s special for its size, location, stunning views and chill feel. It epitomizes everything we look for on a classic Kiwi beach – unobtrusive, never overcrowded, part of a magical coastline, just a simple beach has it all. We love it.

Todd Male

Bethells / Te Henga Beach

I nominated for the best beach in west Auckland, Bethells Beach / Te Henga. It is one of the calmest, rugged beaches that are beautifully reflected on those sunny days. Always have awesome sunsets, places to swim / surf / fish, walk along cliffs, on the dunes, along the beach, special wildlife, and people from all different walks of life. You also have access to Lake Wainamu which is a short walk from the beach and is spectacular with its massive sand dunes reflecting off the lake. This cafe serves unbeatable post beach food.

Luke Campbell

Jackson Bay, West Coast

On a beautiful sunny day, you can enjoy a beautiful wild beach and feel like you are the only person in the world – sunbathing, looking for rare pebbles on the beach, at night building a driftwood fire. Just say it! On a day with wild weather, it’s like you’re in another world – foggy, rocky and desolate. One of the best spots on the NZ coastline so far.

Felicity Lynchard

Thorne Bay Beach, North Coast

Beautiful beach at Waitematā Harbor. Golden sand, shade of trees along the coast, rock pools with fresh water flowing between the rocks from Lake Pupuke. Overlooking Rangitoto and north to Whangaparāoa. Coupled with steep rises on the water’s edge for swimming near shore and avoiding rowing too far to reach deep water. Accessible only by walking around the waterfront or via footpaths from Minhaha Street – no car access so it feels more remote and secluded, yet you are less than 10 km to downtown Auckland.

Kim Leuila

For more New Zealand travel ideas and inspiration, visit newzealand.com


image source

Queenstown house prices: Buyers from overseas New Zealand, Australia are raising prices from afar | Instant News

The average house price in Queenstown-Lakes was above the $ 1 million mark for the first time last month. Photo / Getty Images

Queenstown’s exorbitant property prices are driven by Australians and overseas Kiwis buying homes without setting foot in resorts.

In December, the median house price in Queenstown-Lakes hit $ 1 million for the first time, an 8.2 percent increase from the previous year, according to the New Zealand Real Estate Institute.

That means Queenstown remains one of the most expensive places in the country to buy a home – well above the $ 675,000 national average.

Local agents say expats have sent proxies to watch, because they want to go home earlier than planned or make a good investment in a world ravaged by the pandemic.

Colliers’ director of residential sales Fred Bramwell said demand from Auckland-based buyers was also up, about 10-12 percent compared with last year.

Some are looking for second homes, while others are first-time buyers or looking to move to resorts and away from urban life.

“I think there is a mix of people who now no longer have to work in offices … Covid has kept us going 10 years,” he said.

In recent weeks he has had conversations with New Zealanders in the United Kingdom, United States, Switzerland and Hong Kong about purchasing at resorts.

“Some of these people are buying without looking, getting friends and family to do due diligence.”

He said that many plots, such as in Kelvin Heights, proved popular with absent buyers.

But he doesn’t believe these are speculators looking to flip property – but rather long-term investments.

Both Bramwell and Bas Smith, from Ray White, say Australians are eager to buy property in Queenstown.

The latter said his company had struck some “impressive” deals with Australians with knowledge of the resort.

Smith said there was a general feeling that “the world’s eyes” were on New Zealand for investment opportunities.

“Obviously we have a ban on foreign buyers … but there is a feeling in Queenstown there will be an influx of Australian buyers once the border opens.”

He said about 50 percent of inquiries came from outside the city, but it was not limited to Auckland, as there were people from Christchurch and Dunedin also looking to invest in Queenstown.

“Kiwis are in love with their country and I think people who have money and vice versa will be traveling … looking at real estate.”

The median house price in Queenstown rose from $ 970,000 in December 2019 to $ 1,050,000 last month.  Photo / 123rf
The median house price in Queenstown rose from $ 970,000 in December 2019 to $ 1,050,000 last month. Photo / 123rf

Smith pointed to Fernhill to be the next up-and-coming suburb for the housing market, as some landlords leave the rental market due to tougher demands on housing quality.

“You kind of forget how, you could say, this place has some of the best views in the world, with a lake and The Remarkables.”

He said people could combine multiple units to create newer, bigger homes.

The Real Estate Institute of New Zealand reported that the median house price in Queenstown rose from $ 970,000 in December 2019 to $ 1,050,000 last month, as properties sold faster than before.

The average home price in Queenstown-Lakes is $ 10,000 higher than in Auckland, although some suburbs such as the CBD and North Shore are starting at $ 1.3 million.

Dunedin has seen a sharp rise in house prices, although the average holds nearly half of Queenstown’s values.

The institute’s regional commentator, Liz Nidd, said median prices had risen 18.8 percent from $ 492,000 to $ 585,000 in the past 12 months.


image source

Viral-fighting antibodies persist in New Zealand’s Covid-19 patients | Instant News

Viral-fighting antibodies have been found in Kiwi Covid-19 patients for up to eight months after they were infected – a finding that could bode well for the upcoming vaccine rollout.

The new research, released before peer review, has also proven to be of global importance, given that antibodies persist even when no viruses are circulating in the community.

The study analyzed antibodies in a group of 112 New Zealand patients previously infected with the SARS-CoV-2 virus, most of whom had mild symptoms.

Antibodies play an important role in the immune system against pathogens such as the coronavirus.

Once a new virus is recognized, antibodies are specially crafted to bind to the “spike protein” and stop it from entering our cells – while signaling other parts of the immune system to destroy foreign invaders.

“Because antibodies are very specific for an invading pathogen or virus, they also provide a way to track and study a person’s history of infection,” said Dr. Nikki Moreland, an immunologist and biomedical scientist at the University of Auckland.

“In other words, by taking a blood sample of someone, and seeing if there are specific antibodies for SARS-CoV-2 in circulation, it’s possible to determine if they have previously had Covid-19.”

This is useful for diagnosis – especially when the swab has no more virus due to infection several weeks or months ago.

“By studying the level and function of circulating antibodies, it is also possible to determine whether a person has the types of antibodies that might provide protection if they encounter certain viruses or pathogens again.”

The new collaborative study, carried out by PhD student Alana Whitcombe and research scientist Dr Reuben McGregor on the Moreland team, investigates not only the quantity of antibodies in previously infected people – but also their quality.

“Specifically, do people have antibodies that bind to viral spike proteins, can these antibodies neutralize the virus, and how long do these antibodies last?” McGregor said.

In the laboratory, the researchers measured levels of circulating antibodies that bind to spike proteins, as well as whether those antibodies neutralized.

“Since we had samples from people who were infected months earlier, we can use this measurement to see how long the antibodies last.”

Antibodies play an important role in the immune system against pathogens such as the coronavirus.  Photo / 123RF
Antibodies play an important role in the immune system against pathogens such as the coronavirus. Photo / 123RF

“The good news is we observed that the majority of people have neutralizing antibodies that bind to the spike protein and they can be detected for up to eight months after infection.”

While overseas research shows this too, the main difference is that this effect has been demonstrated in countries where Covid-19 has been successfully eliminated.

“People in New Zealand are not re-exposed to the virus like they are in countries with high community transmission rates,” Moreland said.

When someone is re-exposed, he explained, their immune system boosts, which can affect levels of circulating antibodies.

That makes similar data from abroad more difficult to interpret, given it’s unclear whether antibodies were there simply as a result of re-exposure.

“In New Zealand we are fortunate not to have that problem to consider when looking at our data,” said Moreland.

“We believe the antibodies we measured came from the initial infection, so seeing these antibodies last up to eight months was really encouraging.”

What does the vaccine launch mean?

Moreland said the study offers some “positive signals”, given the data from vaccine trials showing the agent induces similar – and in some cases higher – levels of neutralizing antibodies for natural infections.

“So the protection from the vaccine is also likely to last for months and maybe even longer,” he said.

“But we are still studying in real-time, every month we see that the antibodies last one month longer.

“Also, there are several different vaccines and it is important to track the antibody response to different vaccines to measure whether there is a difference in the quality and quantity of the antibodies they produce, and how long the neutralizing antibodies to vaccines last.”

Further studies showed that scientists could accurately measure spike antibodies from finger prick blood samples.

“This could drastically improve the feasibility of large-scale studies to track vaccine antibody responses.” Whitcombe said.

The paper, uploaded to medRxiv’s pre-print server, involved doctors and scientists from the University of Otago, New Zealand Blood Service, Te Punaha Matatini, Callaghan Innovations, the Maurice Wilkins Center, Southern Community Laboratory and the City of Auckland, Starship and Kidz First Children’s Hospital .

“This work would not have been possible without a national network of doctors, nurses, researchers and scientists and highlighted the collaborative nature of New Zealand’s science during the pandemic,” said Moreland.


image source