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Past Events

SERN Fiordland Focus Weekend

18 - 20 November 2022

In place of our regular Spring field day bus trip, we are holding a weekend in Te Anau to celebrate all the amazing work that is being done in Fiordland and surrounding areas. The event will start on the Friday night with a presentation by the Pomona Island Charitable Trust, from 7.30pm at the West Arm Lounge, Te Anau Holiday Park. The following morning there will be boat rides around Pomona and Rona Islands (fully subscribed at the present, but you can put your name on a waiting list), as well as visits to the Home Creek restoration site. Visits to the Bird Park and Ivan Wilson Park are available for those not on the boat trips. The Saturday afternoon (2.00pm to 5.00pm) will have talks by Environment Southland Biodiversity team, along with reports from other Fiordland and wider Southland restoration groups. Saturday night, 7.30pm, talks will be held at the DOC Te Anau Auditorium, where Estelle Leask will speak on Predator Free NZ and Campbell Leckie will speak on Predator Free Rakiura. Sunday morning, 9.30am we will visit the Lower Upukerora Restoration site to hear about the predator control work there, followed by a visit to Rakatu at 11.00am for a guided walk.

If you would like to join us for some or all of the weekend, please register with Gay at Enable JavaScript to view protected content.. Registrations essential, please note if you would like to go on the waiting list for the boat ride.

The weekend will be based at the Te Anau Holiday Park, 77 Manapouri-Te Anau Highway. Contact details - 03 249 74 57, Enable JavaScript to view protected content.. Advise when booking that you are with the SERN event for a group discount. Cost per person is $39 per night for West Arm double or single rooms. Bed linen included but not towels.

Thanks go to Environment Southland for their sponsorship of the Fiordland Focus Weekend.

OLG's Bushy Point Big Planting Day

11 September 2022

Join the annual planting day for the Otatara Landcare Group’s Bushy Point Restoration project and help get another 1,000 trees planted. This will bring the total to over 30,000 natives in the ground, so that where there was rough pasture there is now a regenerating forest with bird song, lizards and insects for all to enjoy.

Where: Entrance off No: 5 Bryson Road (Estuary end) When: Arrive 9.50 a.m. for a 10 a.m. start… FREE BBQ from 12 noon

What we need you to bring: • Gardening gloves • Spade (narrow ones are best to dig planting holes) • Appropriate footwear and clothing for the conditions • Drink Bottle

We will provide hand sanitiser, soap and water. If you feel at all unwell, please stay at home!

Southland F&B's Te Rere Planting Day

20 August 2022

The annual planting day at Forest & Bird’s Te Rere yellow eyed penguin sanctuary is a full day out in the field, with 500 natives generally being planted, as well as a general look around the area. As the site is remote, car pooling is undertaken. If you would like to join the day, please contact Brian Rance at Enable JavaScript to view protected content.. Check out Te Rere here under projects in Eastern Southland.

SERN Autumn Field Trip - Sandy Point Domain

14 May 2022

The day began at the Oreti Links building with Sheryll Ashton, ICC Parks and Recreation Landscape Planner, explaining that ICC had contracted Boffa Miskell to bring together a Master Plan for Sandy Point for the next 30-50 years and it would be from this that the management plan would develop. Sheryll gave an overview of the Sandy Point area, which encompasses about 2,000ha of land, commenting that it was important to a lot of groups recreationally, as well as having some high ecological values, along with the exotic pine plantations and marram grass, which had been used in the past to enable sand stabilisation. She then asked us to write down our thoughts as to where we would like to see the area going in the future and these notes would be taken back to those pulling together ideas and recommendations for future management. Plenty of discussion followed with over 80 thoughts being noted.

Following lunch we ventured out, firstly to the area opposite the Mountain Bike Car Park. Lloyd Esler spoke about the fungi found here ( an introduced bolete associated with pine), before we walked down along the Oreti River. It was good to see a native remnant, the saltmarsh ribbonwood (Plagianthus divaricatus). Sheryll explained that the current policy for the ICC was to remove the older exotic trees along the river edge over time and replant with natives.

It was then on to the Rover Track, where we had visited on a SERN trip in 2005. At that point pines had been removed not long since and some native plantings had been undertaken, along with natural regeneration being in evidence. There was discussion about the idea of native screen plantings along the track, leaving the areas behind to regenerate naturally over time, with gorse and broom potentially becoming a nurse crop.

A stop at Daffodil Bay gave naturalist, Lloyd Esler the chance to explain that our biodiversity values are not just threatened locally, explaining that the migration of the godwit and other northern hemisphere birds was declining due to alterations to the habitats they stop over at in Korea and China.

The final stop was at Christies Track, by the Oreti Beach. Here Brian Rance, DOC botanist, described the high value of the Sandy Point area, which had totara forests on sand dunes, a nationally rare ecosystem. Along with that was the dune system and wetland systems, making it a diverse environment. A walk to the beach revealed a specimen of pingao, whether planted or naturally occuring was unknown, however the vision of a section of the dunes beachside being returned to pingao was one many felt worthy of pursuing.

Thanks to Sheryll for her running of the day and to all those who contributed along the way. Also thanks to ICC for the use of the Links building.

Kew Bush Working Bee

4 December 2021

The last Kew Bush Working Bee for this year, with a 9:30am start. We are getting a truck load of dunite gravel delivered that morning and will cart it onto the track by motorbike and trailer. There will be some weeding and planting too.
Please bring shovel or spade, gloves and a wheel barrow if you have one. Check this project out at https://www.sern.org.nz/project-directory/kew-bush-invercargill/