Most read story: Video showing live Northland fish fleeing the water means predator was likely near - expert

A marine biology expert says hundreds of dead and dying fish found on a Northland beach over the weekend had likely jumped out of the water to flee from predators.

Residents of the Karikari Peninsula were left flabbergasted after coming across the fish yesterday, which had thrown themselves out of the sea and onto the beach.

Dr Ingrid Visser of the Orca Research Trust says it's likely the fish were not fleeing from orca, as there had been no sightings in the area for about a week and a half, but said locals had reported seeing a large pod of dolphins in that exact area in the past few days.

"There was a large group of dolphins in very close to the shore off Karikari Peninsula, so it's possibly them ... it's highly likely," Dr Visser said.

"There was also a report of a large shark in the area, but ... a single shark, the fish tend to just split around them and race back out."

It is a common tactic for dolphin hunting groups to use anything they can as a barrier to trap fish - rocks, the surface of the water and even the shoreline - and some of those fish end up jumping on to the shore in a last-ditch effort to escape, Dr Visser said.

Fishing was made a whole lot easier for these baffled Northland residents. Source: Supplied



Old oil containers turned into new asphalt-like product Plastiphalt in Christchurch

Construction company Fulton Hogan is using old plastic oil containers to make a new product called Plastiphalt which competes with traditional asphalt.

The plastic used was previously considered to be un-recyclable, but Fulton Hogan is now trying out Plastiphalt at Christchurch International Airport's fire station.

The 250 tonnes of Plastiphalt used at the fire station contains the equivalent of about 3000 oil containers.

The product took about four years of research and development, as well as internal trials.

Vehicles at the fire station weigh up to 60 tonnes, so the surface needs to be hard wearing - but Fulton Hogan says Plastiphalt can stand up to the punishment.

The surface should last about 15 years, and after that it can be recovered and recycled again.

Christchurch infrastructure company Fulton Hogan came up with the innovative concept four years ago. Source: 1 NEWS

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Horror Easter weekend road toll: Six deaths around North Island put fatalities three times higher than last year

The 2018 Easter weekend road toll sits at triple of last year, with six people tragically dying on the roads over the long weekend. 

The official Easter holiday period for 2018 began at 4pm Thursday, March 29 and will ended today at 6am.

The road toll included 55-year-old Denise Tito of Taupo who died after a crash in Waikato on Friday morning, two young boys, aged four and two months, who were victims in the tragic Desert Rd crash on Friday, a person who died at the scene after a truck and motorcycle crash on Saturday and two people involved in a two car collision in Northland last night.

Two people died in road accidents during the Easter holiday period last year.

The highest recent road toll was in 2009, when 384 people died on the road.

The Easter weekend deaths contribute to an already-high road toll, with 2018 looking to beat what Associate Transport Minister Julie Anne Genter previously called a "simply shocking" 2017 road toll. 

Associate Transport Minister Julie Anne-Genter says the road toll is "unacceptably high". Source: 1 NEWS

From the beginning of the year to April 3, there have been 107 people killed on the roads (this time in 2017 it sat at 94) show figures from the Ministry of Transport

In the 12 months to April 3, 2018, 393 people have died on the roads. 

Only 329 people died in the same time period a year earlier. 

2017 had a total of 380 road deaths, and 2016 had 327. 

In roading statistics from NZTA, a dramatic jump can be seen in the number of driver casualties in the last 12 months. 

In the 12 months to March 29, 2017, 159 drivers died. In the same time period of 2018, 202 were killed. A jump of 43. 

With a few hours still to go, the road toll for 2017 was 378, up from 327 in 2016. Source: 1 NEWS

Increases can also been in age groups, with the 12 months to March 23, 2018 seeing 108 people killed aged between 25-39 years, up from 68 people in 2017.

Another significant jump can been seen in the 60+ age group, where 101 died on the roads in the last 12 months to March 29, 2018, compared to 72 in the same period last year. 

Police car generic.
Police car generic. Source: 1 NEWS