Book review:- “Southern Wanderer – A Habitat Restoration Pilot’s Life” by Peter Garden published by Life Stories Publishing. Price $60. Price $60.00
Reviewed by Tony Orman
Peter Gardner grew up in rural Southland and became a world renowned helicopter pilot particularly in the area of ‘pest’ eradication. His teenage years in the Waikaia Valley, tramping and deer hunting developed his deep attachment to the outdoors and that morphed into an appreciation for the environment. The early chapters tell of his teenage years deer hunting and in 1975 he began training for a helicopter pilot’s licence.
Peter Garden formed his own helicopter company in 1985 and began Endangered Species Recovery work in 1990. Such was his skill and motivation that he was enlisted to take part in bio-diversity restoration projects in Alaska, sub-Antarctic South Georgia Island, Puerto Rico and around various Pacific islands.
His approach was simple and practical – no frills, keep it simple and do the job properly.
In carrying out his pest eradication work and in fire fighting, agricultural and search and rescue missions, at times he battled ferocious weather.
In telling of these exploits much of his personal life, ups and downs, also surfaces making for a very readable, personable and interesting book.
A very good read!