March 2022 Update

Education Update – Hilary Hurst

This month kicked off with a steady flow of students from Whakatane Intermediate with a 5 week series of “Turf” days. This is where each class in the school comes up for a time of getting to know each other as well as how our area can be used for recreation.  As half of each class from the school has been up last year – the challenge has been to find activities they’ve not done before.

The current programme features a walk up to Karaponga Waterfall, followed by activities at the MET Centre and finishing with a swim at Lake Rotoma

The school has us booked every weekday until March 25, however the last couple of weeks have had quite a few cancellations in bookings due to the increasing impact of Covid.

The working bee held in February was outstanding – the building, tracks and gardens look great and we logged close to 100 volunteer hours on that day alone with everyone that came to lend a hand.

Our Outdoor First Aid course is going ahead on Saturday May 7th. There are still places available if you are keen to take part. Please get in touch with Hilary to find out more at


Predator Control Update: Peter Fergusson

The recent windy weather generated a number of windfalls, which I have sawed up and cleared away and I have also been busy servicing the AT220 autotraps. There have been some issues with the bait clogging up which I am trialling a solution for.

We have a 3 new volunteers coming on board this month, which is great. Fran and I took one along an AT220 line to show her how to service these.

I have continued the usual trap repair and replacement and bait refurbishment activities and reset a number of cat kill traps.

The Kokako heights team are making good progress with their trapping and are reinstating their bait station network. MET will eventually provide them with support for a wallaby reduction programme once they get baiting underway and we will also help them set up a regime to lower the rat and possum numbers.

The kokako translocation team has completed their final survey and they have located nearly all of the translocated birds and there was at least one successful nest so it looks hopeful for next year’s nesting season.