9 months ago

Selwyn Times: February 14, 2017

Selwyn Times: February 14,

FREE TUESday FEBRUaRy 14 2017 379 7100 Selwyn GET CONNECTED WITH Scorch Broadband Times Proudly locally owned and published by Star Media Award winning publishing group Kea (Nestor Notabilis) Ladbrooks, Tai Tapu, Leeston, Lincoln, Southbridge, Prebbleton, Halswell, Rolleston, Templeton, Burnham, West Melton, Darfield, Arthurs Pass 0800 726 724 Huge cost to clean up lake, waterways RARE: Sharon the mutant sheep with AgResearch scientists David Scobie and Jeff Plowman. ​ Sharon at the cutting edge of hair research LOOK CLOSELY, there is something unusual about Sharon the sheep - and it could help us understand what makes human hair curly or straight. Far from being just one of the flock, the Dunsandel Merino Corriedale cross is one of about five or six ‘mutant’ Felting Lustre sheep around the country which have been identified for study by AgResearch. Research into mutant sheep has AgResearch scientists hoping for a greater understanding of curly and straight hair in humans, and the potential for innovative new wool products. While it is not known how many Felting Lustre sheep there are, they are rare and share the naturally occurring trait of straight wool, instead of the usual crimped wool. “With these mutant sheep, we can for example look at twin lambs where one has straight wool and another crimped wool – or one animal that transforms from straight to crimped wool over time - and study the key differences,” scientist Jeff Plowman said. “This can then be applied to our understanding of the differences in human hair. It’s an opportunity we would never have been able to get with human subjects.” The work began in 2011, when an Otago lamb with an unusual coat was brought to the attention of AgResearch staff involved in wool research. • Turn to page 4 • By Tom Doudney THE SECOND phase of a programme to clean up Te Waihora/Lake Ellesmere is expected to involve a substantially larger financial investment. Environment Canterbury briefed Christchurch City councillors on the Whakaora Te Waihora programme at a public meeting on Thursday. A document initially included in the agenda for that briefing indicated that the second phase, to be carried out over the next 10 years, would cost a total of $95 million. This would complement a “community contribution” to cleaning up the wider Selwyn Waihora catchment of $774.6 million over the same period. After the Selwyn Times inquired about the figures, the document was pulled from the agenda and no mention was made of the costs at the briefing. The first phase of Whakaora Te Waihora, from 2012 to 2016, involved an $11 million work programme over three years, jointly funded by central Government, ECan, Fonterra and Ngai Tahu. ECan and Ngai Tahu have been exploring options to fund the second phase, including co-funding arrangements with central Government, private investment, and alternative regional council funding models. ECan chairman David Bedford confirmed that about $95 million in resources would be required to progress lake restoration actions over the next 10 years. “The Te Waihora Co- Governance Group is currently progressing the draft investment approach. No further detail can be given on investment in Te Waihora restoration until that is finalised,” he said. • Turn to page 4