Video: Local orca 'Pickles' greets kayakers in Tauranga Harbour

A group of friends out kayaking in Tauranga harbour were treated to rare sighting of a pod of orca whales - featuring local celebrity whale, Pickles.

Jade Buitendag and her friends had originally set out on their kayaking mission in search of eagle rays, but were happy none the less with the substitute they discovered.

"After kayaking around for a bit we were blessed with a visit from a pod of orca whales, including the well known Pickles," Ms Buitendag said.

"What a privilege to live in the world's most beautiful country."

Killer whales can be found in all oceans but studies suggest they seem to prefer coastal waters and cooler regions.

The well-known orca is instantly recognisable by the large notch in his dorsal fin. Source: Supplied

Shortage of detox beds sending Gisborne meth addicts back to dealers

A lack of detox beds is sending P addicts in Gisborne back to their dealers instead of seeking help, community advocates say.

They say there is a growing meth problem on the East Coast, where some say it is easier to get a bag of P in the region than cannabis.

Recent police raids in the area caught 41 offenders, twice as many as in a similar operation in Auckland the same week.

Former gang member turned community worker, Tuta Ngarimu, says the problem is getting worse.

"We've got two of the mob who've come and seen me and they want to send two of their boys away."

Problem is, the District Health Board says there are no detox beds for P addicts in Gisborne, meaning people are sent to Hamilton and Rotorua instead.

"There's just no places for them to go but back to their dealer because there is no resource," Tricia Walsh, a former addict-turned social worker says.

Detective Sergeant Kevin Ford said it was true that in the Eastern District it was just as easy to get P as it was to get marijuana.

In everyday warrant searches police used to find bucket bongs and knives, but now, as well as still finding those implements police were also finding meth pipes as a matter of course.

In the recent 10 day operation at the beginning of the month there were a number of children who were caught up in the raids. That sickened him.

"The reality is the parents who are dealing be it cannabis be it meth, the children in those houses – it’s not much of a life."

In 2015 police seized 334kgs of meth nationally, three times as much as the year before when it seized 98kgs.

In 2013 the figure was only 36kgs.

Generally, meth is worth about $1 million a kilogram.

A community advocate says buying drugs in the region is a problem which is growing. Source: 1 NEWS


Christchurch man in serious condition after assault

A 52-year-old man is in serious condition following an assault in the Christchurch suburb of Wooston.

Police say they want to hear from anyone who witnessed an altercation just before 9pm last night at the intersection of Ferry Road and Palinurus Street.

They would also like to hear from anyone who found items of interest in their backyards nearby.

The man is being treated at Christchurch Hospital.

Police car
Police car Source: 1 NEWS