Taylor Swift and her team are being accused of harming an endangered bird’s habitat in New Zealand.
The Waitakere Ranges Local Board said that Swift’s team said that the pop star’s video team potentially harmed the habitat of the endangered dotterel, which lives in Bethells Beach outside of Auckland.
According to reports, the local compay behind the shoot was allowed to bring two vehicles to Bethells Beach, but there were 12 vehicles were used.
Sandra Coney, Waitakere Ranges local board chair, expressed her disappointment, saying that there was a reason why they gave a specific number of vehicles.
“We really have to look after these birds,” Coney said, explaining treat they try to keep the number of vehicles to an absolute minimum because of the wildlife risk.
“There are only two breeding pairs – only four birds – that have been there about 10 years, and they usually fledge only one or two chicks a year. There are only 1700 dotterals left in New Zealand. So it is a major concern for the board, and as a result we have a dotteral management framework which sets conditions for vehicles on the beach,” she told Radio New Zealand.
“For instance, they can only go on a certain part of the beach, they can only go at a certain speed and there should always be someone walking in front of the vehicles to make sure there are no dotterals in the way,” she added.
Cherokee Films has issued a statement on the matter, saying that Swift and here management were at fault, and that they adhered to the protocol.
“We had permission from the landowners and paid a fee for use of the land. At all times the film crew adhered to the Dotterel protocol in guidelines provided about the dotterel nesting sites, and at no time were the film crew close to that habitat. No Dotterel were harmed,” the company said.
“In acknowledgement of the concern this has added to those in charge of protecting local Dotterel population Cherokee Films will make a donation to the breeding program as we support your concerns,” they added.
Read the full statement here.