On Saturday 16th of February, I had the pleasure of driving Sophie Dodd, Rae Te Nahu and Toria Te Nahu to a blessing ceremony organised by Mangaharuru Tangitu Trust. The day went extremely well with the unveiling of a Pou Whenua and the blessing of a funeral site for birds. The WCMG attended a similar event in 2015. It was good to see the project progressing well with birds returning to the colony. Maybe one day, a similar project could take place in the catchment.
On Thursday 13th February 2019, Sir Michael Fay, owner of Pongaroa Station agreed to work with the New Zealand Access Commission to create (along with other landowners) the first official walkway in the catchment. Michael Fay joins Pat & Sue O’Brien who signed on in 2017. Well done to you all. This is a significant milestone in our development and we will keep you up to date with developments as they happen.
Pat O’Brien and Farm Manager Josh Rofe were happy to see Trevor Telfort (our local earth moving contractor) back on Taharoa Trust to blade the fence line for the Mangatupae restoration project. The Mangatupae stream is a highly erodible short and steep catchment. The lower reaches have been already retired with 2 bush blocks but the upper catchment was a challenging beast.
In order to retire the stream, Pat had to retire a substantial amount of land. The stream retirement includes the retirement of an existing bush block of 5 ha. The steep land that will remain grazed by stock is currently being planted with native trees used as soil conservation trees.
The work done will be used to showcase best practise in a steep hill country environment.
On the 5th of December 2018, Ken Orborn signed the Whangawehi Conservation Management Agreement. A big thank you to Ken and the new Forest Manager Lindsay Robinson for embracing our Kaupapa.
This document will give confidence to our sponsors that the investment they have made will be protected for 25 years. The entire restoration area at Whangawehi is now completely convenanted (65 ha in total over 4 estates)
In November 2018, Suzanne Keeling from Beef and Lamb and William MacMillan from FOMA came to meet with Pat O’Brien in regards to a potential research project with the Whangawehi Catchment Management Group. Beef and Lamb current research project is based around 5 key themes;
– The concept of regenerative farming and what it means to the farming community
– Forage systems for the Hill Country.
– New land use classification system
– Community engagement looking at different ways of linking the hill country farming community.
The meeting went very well. Pat indicated that the concept of having research projects on the peninsula was really positive. He encouraged our two guests to connect with the local farming community to develop a research project tailored to meet their needs.
We will keep you up to date about this potential research project.
Back in early November 2018, Janice Edwards and Pat O’Brien laid out our insect traps. This monitoring is done every year as part of the WCMG monitoring programme. It is usually carried out about the same time but due to weather-sometimes the work is delayed. This year we have observed an increase in the number of families captured (7 families have been recorded this year) which is encouraging. The family which was most represented was the Dipterae (flies and mosquitos).
It is encouraging to see that the young forest growing along the river is now increasing the local biodiversity providing a food source for all sorts of creatures. A big thank you to Janice for her commitment, time and patience for a very laborious task of counting large numbers of very tiny bugs. The information provided is extremely valuable as it demonstrates the beneficial change generated by the project overtime.
Whakatipu Mahia (Mahia Pest Free) is recruiting, please share these jobs descriptions with your whanau.
Tauira Mahi Project Coordinator (Predator Free Hawke’s Bay) (Vacancy 18-975)
Hawke’s Bay Regional Council is looking for enthusiastic candidates for an exciting Two Year Fixed Term role within the Predator Free Hawke’s Bay (PFHB) project.
This role is a development opportunity targeted to cultivate skills for future project management that will particularly focus in the Whakatipu Mahia project. The initial 12-24 months training will be in both the Napier and Mahia areas so will require the availability to travel between both areas .A commitment or understanding of the aspirations of the Rongomaiwahine Iwi Trust would be preferred.
The Tauira Mahi Project Coordinator will be trained alongside the Project Leader of PFHB and Project Manager of the Whangawehi Catchment Management Group with opportunities to work alongside local Department of Conservation, Ngā Whenua Rahui and the broader HBRC Catchment Services team
The Successful Candidate will;
- Assist the project management of the Whakatipu Mahia Predator Free Mahia project to ensure the successful delivery of project functions.
- Assist with the overall planning and implementation to meet projects milestones.
- Assist with funding applications as required to support the project
- Assist with project communications at local level and input for the wider regional and national levels.
- Be prepared to further develop leadership qualities.
- Add value to the project.
- Build personal capability and Iwi capacity.
- Maintain and build Iwi and other key stakeholder relationships and links to wider Hawke’s bay ecological restoration activities.
- Assist with scoping and developing opportunities beyond the core project deliverables
Whilst the role will largely be based in the Mahia area, the flexibility to work and attend training in Napier from time to time will be required. A current and clean full drivers licence mandatory with a commitment to the aspirations of the Mahia community preferred.
If you think you are the right person for the role, apply today! Applications close Monday 19 November.
Tauira Mahi Predator Control Assistant (Predator Free Hawke’s Bay) (Vacancy 18-973)
Hawke’s Bay Regional Council is looking for two candidates for an exciting Two Year Fixed Term role within the Predator Free Hawke’s Bay (PFHB) project.
The initial 12-24 months training will be in both the Napier and Mahia areas so will require the availability to travel between both areas. One role will have some focus on working within the Whakatipu Mahia project, so an understanding of the aspirations of the Rongomaiwahine Trust would be beneficial. The other role will have some focus on working within the Poutiri Ao ō Tāne project, so an understanding of the aspirations of the Maungaharuru Tangitū Trust would be beneficial.
The successful candidates will;
- Be trained alongside experienced predator control operators to carry out the day to day pest control for predator pests on farmland.
- Have opportunities to work alongside local Department of Conservation, Ngā Whenua Rahui and the broader HBRC Catchment Services team
- Need to work independently and as part of a team.
- Have good communication skills
- Be committed and adhere to biosecurity and health and safety protocols at all times.
- Have a current and clean full driver’s license.
- Experience with 4×4, LUV/Quadbike and/or a firearms license would be an advantage.
The Tauira Mahi Predator Control Assistants will integrate across other work streams of the project to develop an understanding of ecological restoration, innovation and leadership development.
This is a development role and training will be provided. You will need to be committed to the role, keen and open to learning.
If you think you are the right person for the role, apply today! Applications Close Monday 19 November.
On Tuesday the 6th of November, Janice Edwards and Pat O’Brien headed out into the catchment to set up our yearly insect monitoring traps. The group monitors its insect population using a simple but effective protocol. This monitoring programme allows us to measure the impact of the restoration programme on our local insect biodiversity. The traps are left out for a week. The insects collected over this period get trapped into an alcohol jar and are then identified by Janice. She is then able to count the number of taxons present in the jar and compare with last years count. We are aiming for a higher number of taxons (families) which was the case last year.
A big thank you to Janice and Pat for making this important monitoring tool happen on a yearly basis.
Water monitoring data at Mamangu is showing very low levels of E Coli which is great.
The Whangawehi community is celebrating this Award received in Sydney in October 2018. A big thank you to the whole team and the wider community. This award celebrates the commitment of a dedicated community that has delivered some key milestones over the past 4 years. Well done to you all. Pai the Mahi.