Nearly two years ago Kaiaua suffered major flooding and a result of storm surge and wave action a metre of the beach frontage was taken from the high tide interface and placed on top of the fore shore area resulting in approximately half a metre of fill being placed around the Bird Sculpture and indeed down most of the western shore of the Firth of Thames. This has changed the proportion of plinth to bird; buried the egg- shaped nib wall built with the help of community service workers, and reduced the height of bolsters that were placed in the wall to limit vehicle access to the bird. I think the bird has improved in visual proportion but has lost out in vulnerability by being half a metre lower and therefore more prone to graffiti type paintwork damage to the extreme underside. This negative aspect I think can be compensated by the application of a more mundane type of overall paint finish that with regular inspection and maintenance should be a far superior look compared to what is currently there. I am also going to place circular ceramic tiles around the bird’s steel legs something along the lines of the 2 photographs below which should further improve the Sculptures new proportions.

These two photos are of prototype circular tiles that will be cemented around the high strength steel pipe legs of the sculpture. The tiles on the left are earlier models that may be incorporated with later fatter decorated ones as shown in the photograph on the right. These tiles have been fired higher than recommended glaze temperature which has resulted in losing the rather intense red that should have occurred (the old trap of trying to do too many things at once).