Auckland Council investigating South Auckland cow attack

Auckland Council is investigating the circumstances of a cattle attack in a park at the weekend.

A man was injured on Sunday when he went to help a woman being attacked by cows in Totara Park in South Auckland.

Auckland Councillor Daniel Newman has since raised questions about whether the leaseholder breached his agreement with the council.

Farmer Peter Linton has leased the land for 19 years.

The most recent agreement with the council was signed at the end of 2015.

It states that the licensee can only graze cattle and sheep on the land and not use it for other purposes.

All cattle on the property must be de-horned and can be no more than two years old, and bulls are prohibited.

Today the cows were eagerly inspecting passersby. Source:

Manurewa-Papakura ward councillor Daniel Newman said he had written to council officers to find out if those conditions were being met.

RNZ understands council staff met this morning to discuss their policies around keeping cattle on public land.

Mr Linton declined a recorded interview with RNZ, but he said he was not breaching any of the rules set out in the agreement.

He said he made the decision with the council to send the heffer and her eight-month old vealer calf to the slaughterhouse after the attack.

Even if the cows were not killed yesterday, it was likely they would have been next week, he said.

Sunday's cattle attack occurred during calving season.

During that time, cows are typically very protective of their young and do not like people getting close.

Animal behaviour specialist Elsa Flint said during calving season cattle and the public should be separated

"They should just go into a safe zone, at least have a fence between them and the area that the people run or frequent.

"Generally, most of the animals that live in the shared spaces are very used to people and so at other times of year, I wouldn't expect this sort of behaviour because they are used to all sorts of things going past them and around them," Ms Flint said.

People would benefit from having signs at the entrance of the park that described how to act around a cow and what to do if the animals become agitated, she said.

An Auckland council spokeswoman said its development agency, Panuku, managed the lease and it would review the attack, including considering any necessary changes.

Mike Small and Caron Lynne’s ramble in Totara Park ended in horrifying fashion as they witnessed the shocking incident. Source: Seven Sharp

South Aucklanders shedding weight and improving mental health with innovative pilot programme - 'Feeling blessed'

A new health and weight loss programme created by former professional boxer Dave Letele, also known as "Brown Buttabean", has shown startling results for a group of people in South Auckland.

Letele has seen success from the programme first hand, shedding more than 100 kilograms himself.

A group of people taking part in the programme in South Auckland have also seen amazing results.

"I started at 167kgs now I'm at 119kgs. I'm feeling much more energy, more alive and trying to lead the way for my family feeling blessed," one of those taking part said.

The 28 people who finished the 90-day course lost nearly half a tonne in total, and everyone lowered their cholesterol into healthy ranges.

Half of those at high risk improved their insulin scores. 

Letele now hopes to share his methods with diabetes sufferers nationwide.

"My dream is to have this programme rolled out across New Zealand and the world, it's not just the exercise it's also the mind set and the nutrition," Letele told 1 NEWS Pacific correspondent Barbara Dreaver. 

Dave Letele’s pilot programme has seen 28 participants make huge health gains – both physical and mental. Source: 1 NEWS

What's different about this programme is that along with physical training and healthy eating, there are cooking tutorials, wellness coaching and other wraparound services.

Letele self-funded the programme with a little help from some sponsors.

He is hoping to get more funding in a bid to reach more people and help them turn their fitness around.

The first of its kinds weightloss programme, devised by former boxer Dave Letele, has shown startling results for a group of at-risk people in South Auckland. Source: 1 NEWS


Sad end for magnificent creature as stranded humpback whale put down on Northland beach - 'She didn't suffer'

A whale stranded on a Northland beach has had to be put down today.

The Department of Conservation made the decision to euthanise the 20-metre humpback after attempts to refloat it failed and it became distressed.

It was a sad end for a magnificent creature. 

"Last night it was very hard on her. There was a lot of surf and she was buffeted around a lot. And now of course we have the problem with the sun being out she's overheating," Ingrid Visser, a marine biologist said earlier today.

After nearly three days battling to get the whale back out to sea, DOC made the decision to euthanise her. 

"It's not a nice decision to make. But for the sake of the well-being of the whale it was a decision that we made, and it wasn't taken lightly," said Stephen Stoole, DOC operations manager.

The saga began on Sunday when two humpback whales became stranded on Ripiro Beach.

The calf died on Monday and frantic efforts to refloat the adult were unsuccessful. 

Experts believe the whale may have resisted the refloat because of the calf up the beach. 

The beach was closed off out of respect and for safety. The whale was shot several times by an expert but media were told she didn't suffer. 

The whale remains will be handed to local iwi.

"The remains, the bones will be shared and buried for a period of time. It's called cleansing," said Alan Nesbit, Te Ruroa Iwi chairman.

"The flesh on the good one is edible. But you know you're asking difficult questions. Nothing will be going to waste."

DOC made the decision to end the whale’s life after it became distressed, following failed attempts to refloat it. Source: 1 NEWS