World Wetlands Day 2005 -- New Zealand


World Wetlands Day Programme of planned events for 2005

The theme for World Wetlands Day 2005 is the cultural and biological diversity of wetlands. Fish and Game are the lead agency for co-ordination of World Wetlands Day events, assisted by the Department of Conservation. Below you will find out what is happening within your region of New Zealand.

Auckland and Waikato
Bay of Plenty
Nelson Marlborough
West Coast

Northland will undertake a wetland pond tour of the Kawakawa Wetlands which have recently had $13,000 spent on them through grants received from the Pub Charities. The area is part of a flood plain and it is normally inundated with water in the winter months. The programme will include the official opening by the local District Council Mayor, and the local owner of the hotel and members of the community who have helped fund this work. A barbecue is planned along with displays from Northland Regional Council, DOC and Fish & Game. The local media will be invited.
Contact: Rudi Hoetjes 098 4398 4135 or 021 98546 2298.

Straka’s Pond Bird Spotting: Saturday February 5th. Hosted by Hibiscus Coast Forest and Bird, join the experts to explore this little known lake, spot some rare waterfowl and enjoy this special place.
Contact Spencer Drinkwater +64 9 427 5517.

South Kaipara Wetlands Walk and Talk: Saturday 19th February. Join the South Kaipara Landcare group for a morning spent at Ruby Dawn Wetland. A chance to learn about the ecology and wildlife of the area from renowned wetlands expert Keith Thompson.
Contact Diane McLeod +64 9 420 2510.


Straka's Wildlife Refuge - Bird Spotting
Saturday 5 February
Join members of the Hibiscus Forest and Bird to celebrate World Wetlands Day and explore this little known lake, spot rare birds and enjoy the beauty of this special place. Bring snack, drink, sun block/hat, field glasses and camera. Bring your kayak too if you want to paddle after the bird watching. Finish by lunch time.

Meet: 9.30am at Waiwera car park, car pooling from there
Enquiries: Spencer Drinkwater +64 9 427 5517

South Kaipara Wetlands - Walk and Talk
Saturday 19 February
This is a chance to learn about the ecology and wildlife of the "Ruby Dawn" wetlands with renowned wetlands expert Keith Thompson. The South Kaipara Landcare group will be hosting the event and there will be a free barbecue to follow. Bring drink, sunblock, hat, field glasses and camera.

Meet: 10am at McMurdo Farm, South Head Rd
Contact: Diane McLeod +64 9 420 2510 for directions.

Launch of 2005 Gamebird Habitat Stamp
A field trip to three different wetlands and ending with a barbeque and illustrated talk in sponsor Mighty River Power’s corporate marquee at Rangiriri on the site of the planned National Wetland Centre. There will be a visit Lake Kaituna at Horsham Downs, just south of Hamilton, to see a restored wetland near one of the peat lakes, then onto Kimihia, a wetland fed by water from Huntly East Coalmine, to look at a constructed wetland with high conservation values, and finally Opuatia to see a bog wetland in good condition At the end of the field trip there is a barbecue at Rangiriri and the launch of the Gamebird Habitat Trust Stamp, followed by illustrated talks on how wetlands represent 'wealth in diversity.'
Contact: Shonagh Lindsay +64 9 360 59801.

Bay of Plenty
Full-day bus trip from Tauranga, Rotorua and Whakatane departing 9am - returning 4.30pm. Visit Matata Lagoon in the morning. Then a BBQ lunch. Tour Norske Skog Wetlands, Kawerau, afternoon. The theme is wetland restoration with speakers, displays, and activities. The Matata is an important coastal wetland that has just received funding for redevelopment, with the issues of urban development, pollution and the like.
Contact: John Meikle +64 7 357 5501.


Field trip to the Toko Wetlands east of Stratford on Saturday 5th February. The wetlands are located next to a working quarry in an old oxbow of the Patea River. The Taranaki Regional Council has been trialling a comprehensive animal and plant pest management programme at this site with good results and TRC pest management staff will be on hand to explain the various pest control methods and how landholders and interested parties can enhance the biodiversity values of wetlands through pest control. A World Wetland’s Day feature will also appear in the Taranaki Daily News and Stratford Press on Wednesday 2nd February.
Contact: Allen Stancliff +64 6 345 498098.


"Pukepuke Lagoon Open Day", off Tangimoana Road, SH1. The Minister of Conservation, Chris Carter, will also attend. Talks on wetland birds and plant life, the history of flax cutting and flax weaving demonstrations. Saturday February 5.
Contact: Jo Priestley +64 6 350 9700.


Nelson / Marlborough
Bus tour targeting local district councillors, council staff, as well as gravel contractors to explain and show them wetland creation in relation to gravel extraction.
Contact: Lawson Davey: +64 3 544 6382.


West Coast
Wednesday 2. Screening of ‘Waterfowl and Wetlands - A New Zealand Odyssey’, will take place at the Revell St theatre.

A special display on the theme of water and wetlands in the Take Note bookshop. The recently published "Wetland types in New Zealand" book, by Landcare Research ecologist Peter Johnson and local DOC wetland expert Philippe Gerbeaux, will be promoted as part of the display.

Saturday 26 February. At the Te Tauraka Waka a Mauri Marae at Bruce Bay you will explore the cultural significance of wetlands to Maori and the importance of wetlands to our environment on the West Coast. The event will be open to members of the public to come and join in the many different activities such as talks, walks, planting and weaving.
Contact: South Westland - Weheka, Main Road, Fox Glacier, Telephone +64 3 751 0807.


Bus tour for home schoolers to Te Waihora/Lake Ellesmere to look at wetland issues at the lake. Includes a walk, talks and visit to an eel processing factory. Wednesday 2 February.
Contact: Gnome Hannah-Brown +64 3 371 3706 Note: This activity is now fully booked.

South Canterbury: “Plant-a-thon on a tributary to the Opihi River, a significant salmon fishery. The riparian margin has been retired and fenced by the landowner. Barbeque to follow. This will be on Sunday 6 February.
Contact: Mark Webb +64 3 615 8400.


Wetland poster design competition. This being promoted through community notice boards and kids school holiday programmes. Posters will include the WWD slogan and winning entries will be displayed either at the Library or Museum or maybe even in the meridian mall in town. Entrants will be able to pick up an 'entry pack' from F&G or DOC, which will include an A3 sheet of paper, registration form, F&G wetland info brochures and F&G and DOC stickers. Promotion starts for real after 5th January and will be billed as a 'rainy day project for the end of the holidays'.
Contact: Richard Fitzpatrick +64 3 477 98076.

Queenstown: A World Wetlands Day. display at the Department of Conservation.
Contact: Queenstown Visitor Centre - +64 3 442 7935.


Bus trip to Waituna lagoon, open to the public with BBQ lunch, on Saturday 29th of January. It is intended to be family oriented day. Events include electrofishing, guided walks looking at the special plants and wildlife in the wetlands, lagoon and coast, and fishing displays. There will be talks about how special this area is to local people and the importance of wetlands both economically and environmentally.
Contact Philippa Humm +64 3 214 7095.

"There's wealth in wetland diversity
- don't lose it!"

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