Exciting ecological restoration conversations
Porirua was the site of diverse and exciting conversations about ecological restoration in recently when Greater Wellington Regional Council hosted the region’s annual Restoration Day event.
Greater Wellington Biodiversity Advisor Sara Stuart-Currier was one of the organisers of the event, and says it was a great success, with over 90% of attendees who provided feedback rating the event as extremely effective.
Attendees were able to choose three of five workshops to attend, as well as one of four fieldtrips. Sara says a visit to Kahotea stream was one of the most popular field trips, where students from Titahi Bay North shared their techniques for monitoring and recording water quality, invertebrates, and algae growth in their local stream.
The short trip asked participants to consider how children might be engaged in riparian planting initiatives, and also prompted discussions about student monitoring of local streams. Titahi Bay North students, along with Zoe Studd from the Mountains to Sea programme, explained how to use Greater Wellington’s Stream Kits, which are designed to be used in the field by teachers and students undertaking stream health assessments.
The kits included tubes to view the clarity of the water, nets to collect biological samples, a magnifying glass to examine stream invertebrates, thermometers to measure water temperature, algae identification cards, and guides with data entry forms for students to complete.
Titahi Bay North students have been involved in the Healthy Harbour Porirua programme since 2015 and have been monitoring the Kahotea stream since 2016. The students have also been growing plants in a nursery, planting them along the stream and then monitoring them.
During the Kahotea stream fieldtrip, Zoe and the students also shared a new inanga spawning teaching resource which is designed for community groups and schools. More information about this resource can be found at www.whitebaitconnection.co.nz
Sara Stuart-Currier says Restoration Day is an important time to stop, recognize, and celebrate the contribution that environmental restoration volunteers make to the Wellington region.
“We have a rich biological diversity - from mountain tops to seashore dunes. Greater Wellington Regional Council and partners look forward to celebrating Restoration Day for many years to come”.
Restoration Day, running since 1995, is an annual networking and training event for community groups and individuals involved in environmental restoration projects in the Wellington region. The theme of the 2017 event was ‘Next Generation Restoration’, focusing on unconventional restoration topics.