Manawatu Philosophical Society.
During the year eight general meetings were held, at which the following papers were read: “The Frozen-meat Industry,” by M. A. Eliott; “Pairing Relations of Matter in Animal and Vegetable Life,” by D. Sinclair, C.E.; “Time, how it is found and kept,” by C. T. Salmon, Assoc. in Eng., Canterbury College; “Bird-life in the Southern Islets of New Zealand,” by G. Thomas; “Antarctic Exploration,” by H. Hill, B.A., F.G.S.; “Economic Plants that should be imported into New Zealand,” by J. W. Poynton, S.M.; “Some Unconsidered Aspects of the War,” by J. W. Poynton, S.M.; “Hydro-electricity,” by A. J. Colquhoun, M.Sc.
At the annual meeting the annual report and balance-sheet was adopted.
Abstract of Annual Report.
During the year several matters not merely of local but of great general importance have occupied the attention of the Council. At their request the Government has agreed to extend the measures for the preservation of native birds to the outlying islets of Stewart Island, and has referred the matter to Dr. Thomson and Mr. Phillips Turner for suggestions as to the measures necessary to be taken, and these gentlemen have issued a full report on the bird-life of the Dominion, a copy of which has been made for our library and is accessible to any member of the society. The Council has also given its warm support to the endeavour of ‘Foxton to secure the preservation of the only piece of native bush remaining in its neighbourhood. We have been officially advised that this object has been attained.
Besides the above, three question of great importance have been before the Council, and been considered in detail by sub-committees and reported on to the different bodies more immediately concerned:—
The alteration of the New Zealand mean time from eleven and a half to exactly twelve hours in advance of Greenwich, which would result, in a daily saving of half an hour's sunlight, and bring the Dominion into line with the international agreement. This alteration was suggested by the Wellington Philosophical Society, and its consideration has been postponed by the Government on account of the war.
A scheme for the better co-ordination of scientific work in the Dominion, brought forward by Mr. W. Ferguson, the Chairman of the Efficiency Board, and Dr. Thomson; together with the comments thereon made by the different branches of the Institute in Auckland, Wellington, Canterbury, and Otago. A lengthy and detailed report on these proposals was made by the Council and forwarded to the Secretary of the New Zealand Institute for consideration at the annual meeting in January.
Proposals for the reorganization of the New Zealand Institute, institute by Dr. Thomson, with a view to making it as a whole; apart from its branches, an active and efficient scientific body. These also were considered in detail with the comments of the various branches, and suggestions forwarded to the Secretary.
In connection with bird-preservation the Council desires gratefully to acknowledge the aid given by Mr. W. H. Field, M.P., who took the keenest interest in the matter, and personally interviewed the Premier on the subject.
During the year valuable additions to the Museum and the library have been received, including among other items a collection of fifty butterflies and moths from the Dominion Museum, contributed by Dr. Thomson; a collection of minerals from the volcanic region of Rotorus, by Mr. D. Sinclair; and valuable books of reference, by the Ven. Archdeacon Comms (late of Melanesia).
For the first time this year the society has been called upon to contribute £6 15a 6d. towards the general expenses of the New Zealand Institute. As the chief item in these expenses is the publication of the Transactions, your Council has included in its suggestions for the reorganization of the New Zealand Institute the proposal that the Transactions should be issued gratuitously only to those members who make a written application for the same.
At the annual meeting the following officers for 1918 were elected: President—A. J. Colquhoun, M.Sc. Vice-Presidents—C. T. Salmon, Assoc. in Eng.; D. Sinclair, C.E. Officer in Charge of the Observatory—A. J. Colquhoun. Council—Miss Ironside, M.A.; Messrs. H. Akers, J. L. Barnicoat, C. N. Clausen, M. A. Eliott, R. Gardner, A. Hannay, W. Park, J. Bainforth, J. E. Vernon, M.A.; Dr. W. R. Stowe. Secretary and Treasurer—K. Wilson, M.A. Auditor—W. E. Bendall, F.P.A.N.Z.