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Tampons: an unexpected lifesaving hack

A wrap of the biggest stories and best writing about the outdoors from New Zealand and around the world.

Tampons can be an essential pack item for many trampers, but according to Outside magazine, they could also help to save your life.

In medical emergencies, a tampon’s absorbing qualities can stem nosebleeds and make great wound dressings.

“Sometimes with a bleeding wound, you’re applying direct pressure, and the blood is soaking through but you don’t want to remove that first dressing. Tampons absorb a lot for what they are,” Aboriginal Living Skills School’s Cody Lundin said. 

They also act as a great fire starter, Cat Bigney of Boulder Outdoor Survival School said.

“You can just fluff it up, and it’s great as a fire tinder to catch an ember,” she said. 

The article also suggests using tampons as drinking straws, trail markers and fat candles.

Migrating bird turns around 2100km from home

In one of this week’s relatable stories from nature, a bar-tailed godwit has decided to turn around and fly home after hitting bad weather in the Pacific Ocean.

Renowned for its massive 11,000km migration from Alaska to New Zealand, the species typically arrives in New Zealand in September to enjoy a warmer summer.

This season, a godwit known as 4BRWB was 2100km into its journey when it hit bad weather, and made the decision to turn around.

“It didn’t really wait for the good winds that were coming a week later. It got 33 hours into its trip and decided actually, things weren’t that great. It hit headwinds, turned around and came back,” professor Phil Battley said.

It was the first time scientists have seen a godwit change its mind mid-flight, and they expect it will make another attempt after resting up. 

“This bird in Alaska will probably be getting fat again, in maybe a week’s time it should take off and hopefully will do it,” Battley said.

Read the story here.

Flightless moth rediscovered

A tiny flightless moth, feared to be extinct, has been discovered in four locations in Marlborough.

The native Kiwaia, also known as the Cloudy Bay Moth, hasn’t been seen for three years.

It lives on just one plant species – Ruaolia mat daisies – which are found on the eastern Marlborough foreshore.

The moth – which jumps to get around – was discovered in 1999, but has suffered a loss of habitat through drought and rabbit damage.

Though no specimens were found at Cloudy Bay, new populations were found further south between Cape Campbell and the Kekerengu River mouth.

Read the full story here.

Wild camping crackdown for UK

New bylaws could cut wild camping sites in England and Wales by 2400ha, The Guardian reports.

The laws would also ban activities involving more than 50 people or more without the agreement of landowners. 

Dartmoor wild camper Shamus McCaffery is concerned for his camping freedoms.

“Our hard-won freedoms to spend nights on the moor surrounded by nature are at risk,” he said “This will criminalise law-abiding users of the countryside.”

People caught camping in the wrong spot could risk a fine of £500 ($977).

Campaigner John Bainbridge said the plans go against the intention of national parks.

“Our national parks were created for the benefit of the public after the Kinder Scout mass trespass in the 1930s. They were not intended to be ruled over by control-freak park authorities,” he said. 

Dartmoor National Park Authority hopes the crackdown will decrease the amount of large groups camping beside roads, fires and rubbish.