End of the KCR line at Tai Po – this was a remote area, a real adventure travelling out there – padi fields and white ducks. Ladies dressed in traditional Hakka clothing – it was beautiful
Who am I?
Hedda Morrison, Ho Man Tin and Kowloon
Hoi Ha is way up in the north-east New Territories. Here is Hong Kong Island, here is Tai Po and the Tolo Channel, and here is Hoi Ha. We can see mainland China on a clear day.
In days gone by, the main access to Hoi Ha was by boat from Tai Po, up the Tolo Channel. Sai Kung was a long walk away over the mountains, few people ever made that journey.
Nowadays, it’s a beautiful drive through Sai Kung Country Park thanks to a road that was constructed for the High Island Reservoir project in 1978
On account of its corals – it has 64 species of hard stony coral – it was designated first as an SSSI and then as a Marine Park. Raymond Man’s film – stop after the jelly fish
Once a year, cormorants pass through Hoi Ha. They take a rest before moving on to Deep Water Bay
White-bellied sea eagle and an Osprey
The biggest thrill for me is the fact that we have seahorses at Hoi Ha – this is a Hippocampus Kuda – Yellow seahorse
A ghost crab, photographed by my 8-year old daughter on Hoi Ha beach.
This is a new mangrove area growing up on former farm land that has eroded over the last 50 years and is now covered in sand and sea.
Looking out to sea and on to the shore, this is a site of outstanding natural beauty.
Swimming, kayaking, snorkelling and diving
Some tourists come by boat – they sail here and stay overnight, or come on a dive boat to dive the coral beds
Hoi Ha Marine Park is one big outdoor classroom – these students are from the University of Hong Kong
A variety of valuable habitats in the Marine Park, on the surrounding hillside and in the river valley, make Hoi Ha a biodiversity hotspot. Lego Ho’s film will give you a feel for the area.
The beaches at Hoi Ha are dynamic and forever moving. The entrance to the lagoon widens or narrows according to the time of year. The lagoon is fed by streams, and contains the main stand of mangroves.
True and associate mangroves also fringe the coastline. The only known breeding colony in the world of the Eristena China-Mark moth found on one of the mangroves.
Covered in over 26 species of marshland plants, the marsh is home to freshwater shrimps, Pink – Impatiens chinensis; White – Ludwigia adscendens; Blue – Pogostemon auricularius
Dragonflies and grasshoppers,
Home to fish, shrimps, crabs and crayfish
Stream has emerged from the forest behind the marsh
Ficus microcarpa and Dischidia sinensis – living in harmony
The stream contains rare fish (Predaceous Chub), eels and a critically endangered species of terrapin. The banks of the stream have plants protected in law (Rhododendrum simsii) and a top predator, a Brown Fish Owl
The seasonal marsh dries out in the in the dry season but in the rainy season is so wet and boggy that you sink up to your knees in mud, surrounded by tadpoles. Common Asian Toad Bufo melanostictus
During the rainy season, a seasonal stream flows down the hillside and enters the seasonal marsh. This stream is full of freshwater shrimps. The seasonal and permanent stream converge and flow into the sea.
Exiting onto the beach and into the sea
Open canopy shrubland is valuable habitat for birds and butterflies
The hills are covered in trees, the river valley is forested, and the coastline is fringed with mangroves
There is Fung shui woodland on the hillside to the east of the village. Mature, relatively undisturbed forest beside a village, typically less than an hectare in area Dense and tall with with old trees and vines, including protected species such as the Incense Tree, Aquilaria sinensis Very important for maintaining biodiversity, rich in flora and fauna Surrounded by secondary and modified woodland which as a whole are of high ecological value
Burmese Python and a Macaque
We are facing an environmental disaster at Hoi Ha. We are going to lose an entire forest so that the valley can be developed by both Government and by private individuals under the Small House Policy.
Nicola 1st tpb, 19 may 14
HOI HA MARINE
PARK and RIVER
Sacrificed to the
Small House Policy?
Emigrated to HK
20 years ago
• HK is my home
• I am a Hong Konger
• Adopted 2 children
• My son has a 3* HK ID card
• Lived all their lives at Hoi Ha
• We love Hoi Ha
• Hoi Ha is our home
• Resident for 18 years, we are
Hoi Ha villagers
• We are major stakeholders.
I studied Environmental Impact
Assessment at the Open
University of Hong Kong
Still work with my Professor - an
expert on Hoi Ha’s mangroves
Founded Friends of Hoi Ha in
2003, an environmental NGO
Guiding school children and
university students around Hoi Ha
for 18 years
Relocating starfish to Starfish Bay
• New Territories: used to be
remote and beautiful
• Gradually the hills were
• Valleys were concreted and
• Wilderness areas still remain in
our Country Parks and Marine
Parks – but now under threat
from plans to develop
• Come with me to Hoi Ha…
The River Valley and Marine
Park are a Biodiversity Hotspot
Sea – including a lagoon
Open canopy shrubland
ALL VALUABLE HABITATS
See Lego Ho’s film:
The Beauty Of Hoi Ha.mp4
What is Fung Shui Forest?
• Mature, relatively undisturbed
forest beside a village, typically
less than an hectare in area
• Dense and tall with old trees
and vines, including protected
species such as the Incense
Tree, Aquilaria sinensis
• Surrounded by secondary and
modified woodland which as a
whole are of high ecological
• Very important for maintaining
biodiversity, rich in flora and
Species Recorded by AFCD
Insects (Misc.) 24
Amphibians & Reptiles 4
Spiders etc. 0
Other Marine Fauna 0
Recorded by NGOs
Poor Data from AFCD
“NGOs” include: HK Wildlife, FOHH, KFBG, HK Birdwatching Society
NGO DATA HAS BEEN COMPLETELY IGNORED
Plans to develop and destroy
• You have now explored much of the river
valley and looked into the Marine Park.
• You have seen that Hoi Ha is a special
wilderness area, a biodiversity hotspot l
loved by the public,
• The reason we are here today is because
you have to decide how to zone Hoi Ha
Facing an Environmental Disaster?
A Monument to the Small House Policy
Death of the Marine Park?
The forest keeps the sea clean and the coral healthy
Please protect Hoi Ha’s HABITATS
• Protect our forests from being
• Protect our streams from being
• Protect our marshlands from
• Please Save our Marine Park
• Please confine development to
the existing village
• Please zone Conservation Area
and Coastal Protection Area.
• Please place farming in column
2 to stop ‘Destroy First, Apply
A Plan Which Conserves Bio-Diversity and
Preserves Hoi Ha for Future Generations.