Volunteers for installing AT220's
Story by Trish Clarke, Pukenui Western Hills Charitable Trust
Spend a day in the Forest with the Rangers
A recent Facebook post and an ad on the Volunteering Northland Website asking people to come into the forest with the Rangers saw 24 volunteers put their hands up to help. Thanks also to DOC who shared the opportunity to their regular volunteers. These volunteer legends have been hauling 45 heavy AT220 Auto traps and large wooden ramps along the Taraire Ridge Track. Over 2 days, that is about 200 volunteer hours. Very grateful for Bart van der Meer, Manager of Volunteering Northland, who also supported us and volunteered for the two days. We hope all enjoyed the packed lunch and home baking supplied by the Trust.
The traps installed snake across the Pukenui ridge from Maunu to 3 Mile Bush Rd, Kamo. Great results have already been reported on rats and possums. Auto traps are a NZ design, which self-set, auto bait refill, are deactivated during the daytime for safety and only need to be reset every 6 months. We hope these snazzy new traps ease the ranger’s workload and support forest health.
Introducing Te Kāhu-Neighbours of Pukenui Western Hills land care group
One of our youngest volunteers, Arlo White, is involved in the newly formed Landcare Group “Te Kāhu-Neighbours of Pukenui Western Hills” which is mostly situated around the Northern side of the forest, being the Three Mile Bush Road area. Arlo, aged 10, has been helping deliver pamphlets about kiwi and dogs, has his own trapping network and is planning some experiments on best lures to use and for tracking tunnels. Go Arlo, we think this is a winning idea!
In June/July volunteers in pairs waited at dusk in the forest and recorded a grand total of 95 kiwi calls (76 male and 19 female) being heard over the three-week period! An amazing result and a huge thank you to all the volunteers involved! Check out Kiwi Coast website for the Northland wide kiwi stats.
Thanks to all our volunteers from the team at Pukenui Western Hills Charitable Trust! If you want to get involved, refer yourself as a volunteer here or send us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org.