Meetings are held in the Parnell Community Centre, 545 Parnell Road, (Jubilee Building) on Sunday afternoons in the Hobson Room at 2.30 pm. Plenty of parking is behind the Centre. A donation of a gold coin to help defray hall costs would be appreciated.

In This Issue
Chair’s Report KCC Christmas party Update on Pollen and Traherne Islands KCC Programme Activities Programme Motutapu & kakariki Big award for former F&B winner Green Schools Winner New KCC website p. 2 p.2 p.3 p.4 p. 5 p. 6


Nanda McLaren p. 6 Sunday, 21 March 2010 p. 7 This year a pest control project has started for Motutapu and p. 7 Rangitoto Islands through the Motutapu Restoration Trust. As a volunteer with the Trust, Nanda is very involved with work on Motutapu Island. Come to hear what these volunteers are doing with Department of Conservation to restore Motutapu’s native life.

HOW TO CATCH A RIFLEMAN – Simon Fordham; our Annual General Meeting
Sunday, 16 May 2010 Simon has been very involved with the translocation of 31 Riflemen, New Zealand’s smallest bird, to Tiritiri Matangi Island. He is a brilliant wildlife photographer, and this is definitely a talk not to be missed.

BIRD RESCUE – Sylvia Durrant Sunday, 18 July 2010 Sylvia Durrant is so well know through her work with bird rescue that she hardly needs an introduction [see Te Karere October 2009, pg 7]. Please bring old towels, sheets, etc. to donate to the Bird Rescue Centre for Sylvia to use when she cares for the injured birds. THE CASE FOR A KERMADEC SANCTUARY – Karen Baird
Sunday, 19 September 2010 Karen works in the Auckland office of Forest and Bird and is spearheading an exciting new campaign in partnership with Pew Environment Trusts’ Global Legacy project and jointly with WWF-NZ [World Wildlife Fund for nature] to create the largest protected marine area on the planet. Come and hear of their successful endeavours during the year. Please change to an electronic Te Karere! Emailing Te Kerere saves on costs and decreases
bad environmental effects from printing, saves paper and waste, and reduces our carbon footprint during the newsletter’s hand-delivery. Thank you to the many of you who now receive Te Karere by email!! We would like to keep increasing this as much as possible, so please update your email details at or email us with “Email address” in the subject line at This includes both Forest and Bird and KCC members.

page 1

Chair’s Report
The beginning of a new decade, and I was going to kick off with the excitingly positive news that the new KCC website which last year our branch funded, was up and running the week before Christmas. Circumstances are such since I first thought about writing this report that I feel I can’t mention the new KCC website without first paying tribute to the person responsible for getting the final push done. That person was Helen Bain, the Manager of Communications in Forest and Bird. Some of you will already know Helen (38) was tragically killed in an accident the week after Christmas. As both an executive member and a branch chair, I will miss working with this energetic and outspoken young woman. I must say I did enjoy having another woman in those executive meetings with me ̶ one willing to speak out about things that concerned her, and one so committed to Forest and Bird. What a bonus!! Our branch held a bit of a special place with Helen, because we agreed to pay the not insignificant costs of getting a new website created for KCC, when all previous offers had fallen through. Until we came to the rescue, as it were, only a lack of money was holding the project back. We entrusted that money with her team, and we weren’t let down at all. . The very last thing Helen did for Forest and Bird before her leaving work for Christmas holidays and then having the accident which took her life way, way too soon, was to have a wee word with the website-builders in order to get the KCC website publicly launched before Christmas, as she’d promised the society’s Executive. The new KCC website is an excellent educational tool; so full of fun, games and information about conservation. As Helen herself did merely two days before her accident, and on the day after Boxing Day when most people are still bemoaning having eaten too much at Christmas, I recommend that you take a look at it if you haven’t already: or via the main Forest and Bird website.
page 2

In keeping with promoting activity by children in conservation, just before Christmas our branch awarded Waitoki School with our Green Schools Award for their work in creating a habitat to encourage the native birds into their school area. The $1000 prize money is going towards building a potting-shed/hot-house and installing permanent irrigation for their plantings. More information about their project is available on the new KCC website. Please refer to it if you can; it is very inspirational.

Anne Kiwi Conservation Club Christmas Party
On the afternoon of 6 December, about 10 kids, their parents and KCC staff had lots of fun at the annual KCC Christmas party. At the Waitakere Forest and Bird house on Piha beach, they learned about penguins and had a go at being one. It was great weather & everyone had fun going down to the beach.

Everyone’s a penguin as they try on the penguin costume

The costumes were a hit! Siobhan's children wore them at the beginning and then most of the kids tried them on later. The blue T-shirts and colouring books were also well received - Siobhan's nephew is wearing one of the T-shirts in the photo. Exchanging anonymous gifts and a sausage sizzle added to everyone’s fun.

Update on Pollen and Traherne Islands
There has been a lot of Forest and Bird activity on Pollen and Traherne Islands since we wrote about the area in the October issue of this newsletter. Along with members of Waitakere branch, we made a boat-trip to Pollen Island to look for and record its flora and fauna. To our delight, three pairs of fern bird were sighted, as well as a couple of spoonbills. For the same reason, we also had two Forest and Bird walks out around Traherne Island, in November and December. On another walk in January we accompanied the New Zealand Transport Authority and the Auckland Motorway Alliance, the Regional Council, ACC and DoC. Although we did not sight any fern birds, despite the island’s prime habitat for them, we did find a naturally rare plant, Mimulus repens, and confirmed tracks of banded rail. Banded rail tracks on Traherne Island Keeping the channel of water open would also maintain the mangroves around the islands. We are talking with NZTA right now about how to keep the water channel between the new motorway and the island. All consideration of boardwalks and better access is in relation to Traherne only, already connected to the causeway by a cycleway. Plans are for widening the causeway three to five metres and widening the road. We are working closely with NZTA/AMA especially on protecting the birds and plants in the area during the planned road widening and uplifting. If anyone has especial interest in this area, please contact us via our branch email (  

  Rare Mimulus repens threatened by SH 16 extension on Traherne Island The Mimulus plant is located right in the way of the proposed motorway expansion. The Vegetation Management Plan for Traherne which NZTA et al have now officially adopted requires that the Mimulus be moved until the roadworks for SH 16 are done, and then replanted on Traherne. Hopefully it will survive the disruption. The apparent absence of fern birds on Traherne is likely due to access by animal pests, like hedgehog, cats and rats. The existence of fern bird on Pollen, however, gives us reason to ask NZTA about the likelihood of keeping Pollen Island as an island as opposed to having the new widened motorway physically encroach onto it. We want to avoid providing access for pests to go to Pollen from Traherne.

A real coalition of interested parties: Mike Wilcox, Auckland Botanical Society President; Wendy John, Friends of Oakley Creek; John Dwyer, Unitec student; David Grieg, NZTA & Manager of Traherne Management project; Michael Coote, Waitakere Forest and Bird; Sandra Jack, ex manager Ark in the Park, now DoC Community Relations; and Alan Emmerson, Northshore F&B


page 3

YOUR VOLUNTEER COORDINATORS ARE SIOBHAN, MARIANNE AND MARGUERITE Access our website on To join our email tree to receive up-to-the-minute news on conservation topics, please email Siobhan - - with “KCC email tree” in the subject line.

Meet at the Leigh Marine Reserve, under the big pohutukawa tree to the left of the staircase down to the beach, at 11 a.m. We will explore the rocky shore on foot and with masks and snorkel (for confident swimmers). You will need warm clothes, sturdy shoes, flippers and/or sand shoes, togs, towel, mask and snorkel and/or swimming goggles, a hat, and sunscreen. And a picnic, drinks, and snacks. There will be a small charge per person for snorkel hire and guiding. Book with Siobhan by email:



Fungi love autumn! Peter Buchanan (a fungi expert) will join us in a local bush area at 2.00pm to open our eyes to what is under our feet and explain why fungi are special. It is amazing what you will find once you know what you are looking for. Venue to be confirmed and time may be subject to change, so it is essential to book with Marianne:

SUNDAY 23 MAY 2010


Join us for an exciting visit to the Creatures Unlimited Lab in Titirangi, where we will see lots of weta, native and exotic lizards and spiders! Brian Lawton (aka the lizard man) will answer our questions about te whanau aitanga (creepy crawlies). Brian is also an animal wrangler for film and TV so you can ask him about that, too! KCC members are free ($10 per non-member child). Meet at Woodlands Park School car park, 202 Woodlands Park Road, Titirangi at 10am. Numbers are limited so it is essential to book with Suzy: .



Motutapu is experiencing an exciting, large scale and long term transformation. The Motutapu Restoration Trust is working hard to restore the natural and cultural landscapes of this beautiful island - "breathing new life into an ancient landform". There will be a sausage sizzle at the newly restored Reid Homestead in Home Bay (near the wharf) at the end of the day before catching the ferry back. This is a KCC event but open to all members of Forest and Bird in the Auckland area. Please bring water and lunch, suitable footwear, warm clothing, a raincoat and gardening gloves (if possible). Meet at the 360 ferry building at Pier 4, Quay St (to the left of the Fullers Wharves) at approx 8.45am to buy tickets ($20). The ferry leaves at 9.15am and returns at 3.30pm. Book with Marguerite: .

Any problems? Any questions? Please phone Marguerite on 376 1149.

FIELD TRIPS BY BUS: Unless otherwise stated, the bus will leave from the lower Albert Street bus stop at 9am. All trips pick up at the Takapuna Rose Gardens. Trips heading south also pick up at Harp of Erin, whilst those heading north also pick up at Point Chevalier. Please advise where you will board the bus when booking your trip. You should be suitably clad and shod for the area and conditions expected. BOOKINGS: please forward a cheque payable to FOREST & BIRD SOCIETY to the booking officer immediately after booking. Refunds will not be given (except for sudden illness or urgent reasons, at the discretion of the committee) unless cancellation is notified by the Wednesday prior to the trip.

grown in family groups; a seasonal garden where the challenge is still to have some plant or vista at its best every week of the year; a garden where still ponds and cascades of water create a sense of tranquillity; a garden filled with moments of drama and lots of heady perfume. BOOK: with Isabel on 528 3986 COST: $33.00 (includes garden entry fee) SATURDAY 15 MAY 2010 TIRITIRI MATANGI ISLAND - DAY TRIP Book your own passage with 360 Discovery on 0800 360 347. For those of you travelling from Auckland tell 360 that you will be travelling on your Gold Card to Gulf Harbour but need a ticket from Gulf Harbour to Tiri. cost: $34.00 return. (A 360 rep. will bring your ticket to the boat when you arrive at G.H.) Boat leaves Auckland at 9.00am and Gulf Harbour at 9.45 am. We will guide you on your exploration of this conservation gem so no need to book a guide but do bring some money to spend in the magical shop! Packed lunch, water (tea and coffee available on the island), rain coat and sensible footwear essential. BOOK: with Sally on 528 7506 and for more information. SATURDAY 19 JUNE 2010 EXPLORING THE PUHOI AREA Our trip includes lunch at the historic Puhoi Pub (tempura batter fish, chips and salad, light dessert and tea and coffee). BOOK: with John on 528 7506 COST: $36.00 - includes lunch

SATURDAY 20 MARCH 2010 ARK IN THE PARK Here is your chance to visit this wonderful piece of Waitakere bush where North Island robins and stitchbirds have been released in recent years. We hope to have a talk from one of the volunteers and spend a relaxed day walking some of the tracks. BOOK: with Lou on 376 4072 COST: $20.00

Two of many beautiful sights in Ayrlies Garden

SATURDAY 17 APRIL 2010 AYRLIES IN THE AUTUMN A return trip to this amazing Whit ford Garden - see it in its autumn regalia. Beverly McConnell, the inspiration and perspiration behind Ayrlies, says: The garden evolved out of a desire to create a larger informal country garden, reminiscent of the homestead gardens of my Hawkes Bay childhood; a garden where the contours of the land dictated the shape; a garden where there was space for larger trees

SATURDAY 17 JULY 2010 KAIPARA COAST SCULPTURE GARDEN Explore this interesting garden, browse in the plant centre or sit and enjoy the bird song. Stroll along a gentle 1km sculpture and garden trail, set in a tranquil and inspirational rural oasis; it has over 50 selected sculptures by leading New Zealand artists and is located at award winning Kaipara Coast Plant Centre. BOOK: with Lou on 376 4072 COST: $ 28.00

page 5

Kakariki need you!
The recent successful pest eradication programme on Motutapu and Rangitoto means that a massive 3,800 hectares has been added to the pest-free islands of the Hauraki Gulf. Credit goes to Department of Conservation Auckland area manager Brett Butland and project manager Richard Griffiths for their work on this extremely complex pest removal exercise. Already over 450,000 native plants have been propagated, grounded and protected from invasive weeds over the past 15 years by thousands of volunteers. Over 70 hectares of native forest is growing in the fertile ash from the Rangitoto eruption. Now that the island is virtually pest free, an increasing native bird population needs a blossoming and fruiting forest to feed them.

nursery doing native seedling propagation as well controlling serious weeds in the rapidly growing “volunteer” forest. There is a volunteer day every first, third and fifth Sunday of the month from January to December except on public holiday weekends. To register email or phone 09 5245 072 or 09 522 0919. For more information visit or come to the Branch Meeting on Sunday March 21st to hear more about this important project.

Success Story for Previous Forest and Bird Award Recipient
In 2007 James Russell (above, with weka) won a MacDiarmid Young Scientists of the Year award towards which the central Auckland branch contributes enough to have a Gold Sponsor status. Now Dr. Russell has recently earned a government FRST award. He will continue researching island invasions by invasive rats, which garnered him the 2007 award. He will use previously collected ecological and genetic data to understand how rats invade islands and determine whether a population can be established by the arrival of a single pregnant female. Dr Russell will use the resulting model to test a real rat invasion on an island. The spread and density of the rat population on the island will be monitored over two years, allowing Dr Russell to test the accuracy of his model. Dr Russell’s work will be used to prevent ongoing rat reinvasions of islands in New Zealand and will also provide new information about the behaviour and subsequent rate of spread of the first animals to colonise a new location.

One of the new kakariki on Motutapu

For example, kakariki timed perfectly their recent arrival on Motutapu to have a stab at breeding; the family group of five plus a couple of friends should all be doing well. But they and other native birds will require a food source from native forest. You can help prepare such a forest volunteers of all ages are needed to plant the trees of an ideal habitat for some of our endangered and rare native species. KCC is joining the June 20, 2010 planting day. We encourage all KCC and Forest and Bird members to enjoy a special day out and contribute to this significant conservation project. If you can’t wait that long, volunteers are required all year round to work in the

page 6

Green Schools Winner Waitoki Primary
Auckland’s Waitoki School is soon going to be a haven for birdlife and insect-life, now they have scooped this year’s Green Schools Award. Waitoki School prides itself on recognising its students as individuals who bring a range of experiences and talents to the school. A “virtues programme” is in place to encourage good social skills including honesty, politeness and respect for others and the environment. Currently, the school is surrounded by farmland which is filled with exotic animals such as horses, llamas, bison, alpacas, highland cattle and giraffes. However, with the $1000 from the Green Schools award, the school can replant the area with kahikatea, totara, puriri, cabbage and flax trees.

The money will be used to enable students to grow native seedlings themselves. They plan to build both a shade-house and install a drip irrigation system. Of course, these seedlings will later be planted in the school grounds. On top of this, the school will sprinkle the area with nesting boxes and bird-feeders filled with sugar water, honey and seeds to attract tui, waxeyes, wood pigeon (kereru) and kokako. The annual Green Schools award is open to primary and intermediate schools in the central Auckland region. For more information see

It’s finally here – the Kiwi Conservation Club website!
Born a week before Christmas last year, this new website came about because of central Auckland’s exclusive funding to create it. It is impressive with information, games, activities, movement, colours, etc. Teachers will welcome it as an educational resource, and it makes learning about New Zealand wildlife fun. Even adults can learn something from it. Do encourage children to access it – they will find it fun, informative, and hopefully inspirational. It has its own internet access at .

page 7

Members of your committee
Anne Fenn - Chair, Isabel Still - Secretary, 528-3986 John Hally - Treasurer, 528-7506 Marguerite Pearson - KCC, 376-1149 Barbara Thomborson - newsletter editor,; 585-1370 Peter Riddick - Conservation, 524-2229 Mark Winter
Our Email:

Useful Auckland City contacts
1. Public Transport Information (for bus, train, ferry and carpooling), phone Maxx on 366-6400 or view their website at 2. Pollution Hotline 24-hour, in Auckland area: 377-3107. 3. Information & Services - Auckland Regional Council, view; ph. Enviroline on 0800 80 60 40. The site has plant & animal pest fact sheets. 4. North Shore Bird Rescue Centre; contact Sylvia Durrant on 478 8819.
302 0203; 302 3901

Auckland Regional Office:

Contact any of us if you want to contribute to what Forest & Bird does in the Central Auckland Branch.

Our website:, refer "What's On in Your Area" and then "Events"

TE KARERE is your newsletter - if you have any comments on its presentation or the type of information included, please let us know. It is also a way your committee keeps you informed about the local events and meetings and the local and regional issues with which your committee is involved. Any feedback you have is welcome and may be directed to the postal address on this page, attention Anne Fenn, or by email to the Editor at

Any opinions expressed in feature or guest articles contributed to Te Karere are those of the contributing authors, societies or other organizations and are not the opinions or policies of Forest & Bird, nor are they necessarily endorsed by Forest & Bird.

Royal Forest & Bird Protection Society of New Zealand (Inc) Central Auckland Branch P.O.Box 1118, Shortland Street Auckland 1140

KCC Newsletter Enclosed