Brian Robertson - Chairperson
Project Manager and Professional Civil Engineer
Brian is a Chartered Professional Civil Engineer with over 30 years’ experience in civil construction and management, and he is currently a project manager on large motorway projects in Auckland. Brian is also Chairperson of the Wild Bird Care Charitable Trust which was founded and established by his wife Mandy in 2009.
Brian became increasingly involved and passionate about wildlife and rehabilitation through Mandy’s work in her rehab centre and joined WReNNZ before joining the committee a few years later. Brian hopes to use his management and project management skills to help grow WReNNZ as an organisation and help our members to continue their amazing work saving our native wildlife.
Jordan Rennie - Secretary
Wildlife Advocate and Former Rehabilitator
Jordan has previously rehabilitated birds in Wellington for four years and gained a wealth of knowledge through the WReNNZ conferences and other WReNNZ members. She is currently working in administration and hopes to return to study next year. Jordan is devoted to animal liberation and conservation and hopes to continue to make a difference in these fields.
Emma Bean - Vice Chair
Kiwi Husbandry Manager
Emma is the Kiwi Husbandry Manager, or Tumu kaitiaki kiwi, at Rainbow Springs’ Kiwi Encounter – New Zealand’s largest Kiwi Hatchery. Eggs are brought in from the wild, incubated, hatched and reared to a stoat-proof weight before being released back to where they came from as an egg this increases survival rates from just 5% to 65%. Emma has worked at Rainbow Springs for over 11 years and in that time she has seen them hatch the 500th kiwi chick, the 1000th and the 1500th. This season Rainbow Springs hatched 124 chicks with a 98.4% hatch success.
Emma is British, but she is now an ‘honorary kiwi’ - having become a NZ Citizen! She has a BSc (Hons) Biological Sciences from The University of Birmingham, UK and a PG Dip Conservation Biology (merit) from Massey University, New Zealand. However most of Emma's knowledge has been learnt on the job, utilising transferable skills from her previous Microbiology lab background and other conservation projects she has participated in around the world (from Elephants in Chang Mai to Gibbons on Phuket). Rainbow Springs is also able to share incubation and hatching knowledge with fieldworkers and other incubation facilities by hosting the annual Kiwi Candling Course.
Emma has been a member WReNNZ since its inception, and been a committee member for the last year – as Rainbow Springs also receive sick and injured wild kiwi from around the North Island, in addition to the Operation Nest Egg conservation work. Their team have attended the Avian Wildlife First Aid Course, hosted by Massey University and they work closely with local vets, Massey Wildbase and the Department of Conservation to ensure they provide optimal rehabilitation. Emma is also the Kiwi Husbandry Advisor for ZAA (Zoo Aquarium Association) offering advice to other captive facilities.
Angelina Martelli - Committee Member
Senior Wildlife Vet Nurse
Angelina has been a Veterinary Nurse for over 14 years and currently works at The Wildlife Hospital Dunedin as the Senior Wildlife Veterinary Nurse. Angelina is originally from Christchurch where she spent 5 years working in companion animal practice before spending 7 years at Wellington Zoo where she was heavily involved in Native Bird treatment and rehabilitation.
Angelina has experience with a wide variety of Native Birds, particularly Kereru, Kaka, Yellow-eyed and crested Penguins as well as various seabirds and small passerines. She loves the challenge of treating and rehabbing small birds and feels very privileged to work with such charismatic animals.
Dr Janelle Ward - Committee Member
Wildlife Veterinarian and Lecturer
Janelle is an avian and wildlife veterinarian that has been involved with many aspects of wildlife health including research, oiled wildlife response, pathology, species translocations, wildlife rehabilitation, education and training. She is dedicated to helping to protect the unique and endangered wildlife species of New Zealand.
Janelle currently works part-time for the NZ Department of Conservation and part-time for Sanctuary Mountain Maungatautari as Species Coordinator. Janelle also conducts training for vets, vet nurses and those interested in wildlife first aid and rehabilitation.
As WReNNZ Chair Janelle oversees all aspects of the organisation. Working with the committee Janelle is focused on WReNNZ growth and sustainability. Janelle chairs the AGM, sources speakers for WReNNZ conferences and seeks ongoing opportunities for networking and collaboration, to consistently expand and improve wildlife rehabilitation in New Zealand.
Bev Wilkinson - Committee Member
Wildlife Rehabilitator specialising in Kiwi
Bev has recently increased her involvement with WReNNZ after reducing her workload with the National Kiwi Hatchery in Rotorua.
Bev has 11 years experience working with Kiwi and is very keen to stay involved in wildlife rehabilitation. Bev is a fantastic communicator who is incredibly passionate about conservation and husbandry standards.
Claire Travers - Treasurer
Independent Contractor for Kiwi Conservation
One of Claire's earliest memories is of jumping out of bed at 3 years old to climb into her 'gummies' and go help the neighbouring farmer feed the calves. Whether she helped or not could be a moot point. But she knew then she wanted to work with animals in some way or other. Claire went on to study agriculture in the UK, and then did overseas experience which resulted in moving to NZ, on to a beef and sheep farm on the outskirts of Rotorua. It was in the late nineties that she took the side step from agriculture in to conservation.
It was at Rainbow Springs Wildlife park that Claire gained a real understanding of the uniqueness of New Zealand's flora and fauna and started rehabilitating wild birds that were brought into the facility. She was there for at least 18 years and in that time moved from working with a large variety of native species to just concentrating on kiwi, in particular participating in the Operation Nest Egg conservation programme, but also rehabilitating wild kiwi that were brought to the facility with a variety of injuries and illnesses. Claire no longer actively participates in kiwi rehabilitation - unless of course a sick kiwi gets brought to her.
Rosalie Goldsworthy - Committee Member
Wildlife Rehabilitator specialising in YEP
Rosalie began rehabilitating wild birds in Days Bay, Wellington in September of 1994. Rosalie and her neighbour, Vivienne, decided to do this together and it did not take long to realise that there was a real need and they established the Eastern Bays Little Blue Penguin Foundation, as a charitable trust to help fund their work.
It was a steep learning curve and in their first year Rosalie and Vivienne helped over 270 birds, 64 of which were natives. Within 7 years they had worked with 94 different species. From the beginning they consulted with the best experts they could find – Taronga Zoo for seabirds, Silvia Durant for garden birds, Dawn Morton for natives, particularly Harriers, and many others.
Their centre closed in 2001 and Rosalie moved to Moeraki to continue the work for Penguin Rescue. She rehabs mostly penguins and manages the 2 largest Yellow-eyed penguin colonies left on mainland New Zealand, which make up 20% of the population.
As soon as Rosalie heard of the possibility of WReNNZ, she was on board straight away. There are many tricks of the trade which save lives and she is always learning and happy to share.
Mikaylie Wilson - Committee Member
Wildlife Veterinary Nurse
Mikaylie has been a wildlife veterinary nurse for the last 19 years. She has worked at Taronga Zoo Wildlife Vet Hospital, Western Plains Zoo, Perth Zoo, Vancouver Aquarium and is currently working at Auckland Zoo. Mikaylie has also volunteered for 3-4 months at Calgary Zoo and Alaska Sealife Centre.
Mikaylie has worked with a large range of mammals, birds, reptiles and amphibians in Australia including: Pinnipeds, Harbour seal pups in Canada and Alaska and all NZ wildlife for the last 6.5 years.
As a commitment through Auckland Zoo, Mikaylie has been a kakapo ranger for DOC since 2013. She works on the transmitter field trips to find, check health and change the transmitters on kakapo annually and hand rears kakapo chicks on islands in the breeding season every 2-3 years.