Environment

Iconic kauri in trouble

Kauri dieback disease has pushed our forests to a tipping point and what we do now will determine their fate. To lose kauri means losing the whole forest ecosystem because it is a keystone species upon which 17 other species depend. The fact that we...... Read More

Takahe success

The takahe are doing well at Tawharanui Regional Park and providing support for the national takahe recovery group, together with lots of interest for park users. To date, we have 14 adult birds on the park and one chick. Last year’s chick was...... Read More

Cultivating Christmas

My Christmas escape plan will help you to cultivate wonder in the natural world. If your Christmas includes the luxury of lying back in the hammock in a shady part of your garden with a book, here are some ideas. Even if the reading will only take place...... Read More

Flying goats in the gulf

Here in Rodney, the natural world provides signals that tell us that summer is on its way – for example, cabbage trees in full flower abuzz with bees, pohutukawa in bud (in some places already breaking out in flower), garden and bush birds actively...... Read More

Shameful food waste

Even basic food items seem expensive. The household grocery shop takes up a significant portion of a domestic budget, yet we waste an eighth of the food we buy. We leave food until it’s too old to eat, we don’t eat everything on our plates,...... Read More

Battling bugs

Like many people these days, although I’m not strictly organic, I prefer not to use chemical sprays in my garden, particularly on any plants that produce edible fruit or foliage. One significant drawback of not using chemicals, is that timing of...... Read More

Saving Private Gecko

A year ago, 80 Duvaucel’s geckos were reintroduced to the Tāwharanui Open Sanctuary after more than a century of being absent from the mainland due to the impact of introduced predators. This reintroduction was achieved due to the breeding...... Read More

Mixed views on mangroves

At a recent public meeting in Orewa on a conservation plan for the estuary most of the discussion was about mangroves and siltation. The plan acknowledged the ecological value of mangroves and their spread but this did not satisfy its vocal critics....... Read More

Gardening for wildlife

Mention deserts and people picture dry sandy desolate, wind-blown stretches of endless sand. But today, as we continue to pave over and eliminate our natural landscapes and expand our acres of lawn grass, we are slowly creating an urban desert incapable...... Read More

NZ fairy tern

It’s not often one can say, “I saw New Zealand’s rarest bird from the back deck of our house”. But last weekend, that’s what happened. We live in Whangateau, Tramcar Bay to be exact. I was inside when I heard a tern calling...... Read More