Penguin cam a true team effort

Since the launch of “penguin cam” in October thousands of people from New Plymouth and around the world have been able to watch a live feed from a kororā/blue penguin burrow at Ngā Motu Beach. Ngā Motu Marine Reserve Society chairperson Anne Scott takes a look back at 20 years of advocating for marine conservation in the region. Anne Scott admits it was no mean feat to protect Nga Motu/Sugar Loaf Island’s coastline for future generations. “We were naive and had no idea it would take as long as it did but now…continue reading →

Volunteering provides connection with Mounga

Seeing native birds soar through Mt Taranaki’s bush has boosted Danny Robinson’s passion for conservation. ‘The mountain is special. I’m in awe of the huge trees and amazing bird life. The constant bird calls set your mind at ease,’ he says. Danny is one of a group of volunteers who have spent time monitoring toutouwai/robin on Mt Taranaki in the last couple of months. He ventured up the Mounga three times, looking for the birds with 17 other Taranaki volunteers. Danny was inspired to volunteer with Taranaki Mounga’s bird monitoring team by a…continue reading →

Toutouwai/robin breeding on Mounga

We are celebrating after news toutouwai/North Island robin are breeding on Mt Taranaki after being extinct from the area for 112 years. Recent monitoring in a 1000 hectare block of forest on the Mounga that has intense rat trapping located three pairs of toutouwai with chicks in their nests. The birds are among the 50 robins released into the area in April this year, and are the first species the project re-introduced. “We are ecstatic the robins have stayed and are breeding - it’s a testament to the exceptional work of the team.…continue reading →

Join the Taranaki Mounga team

The Department of Conservation is currently advertising an exciting new role to support the Taranaki Mounga Project, this is an amazing opportunity to make a meaningful difference to the environment in Taranaki. https://careers.doc.govt.nz/jobs/DOC-400-250TE The Taranaki Mounga project aims to restore the ecological vitality of Mt Taranaki in partnership with iwi, agencies and the local community. The focus is to secure the Mounga against animal and weed pests, restore species and build community support and commitment. We are seeking a Biodiversity Co-ordinator for a two year fixed term contract.  To be successful in this…continue reading →

Penguin Cam streaming live from blue penguin burrow

A live Penguin Cam streaming on our website will give the public  a unique 24 / 7 view of the world’s smallest penguin. To the best of our knowledge this is the only live webcam in New Zealand streaming from a blue penguin burrow.  The Ngā Motu Marine Reserve Society, Chaddy’s Charters, PrimoWireless, George Mason Charitable Trust and True Sense of Security Ltd have all contributed to getting the live webcam up and running. Department of Conservation senior biodiversity ranger and Taranaki Mounga team member Emily King says Penguin Cam is located in…continue reading →

Conservation week poetry competition

As part of Conservation Week DOC is having a Conservation Poem Competition. Here's a taste with two of the entries - you can see the poems at the North Egmont Visitors Centre from Saturday 14 October until Wednesday 18 October 8.30am - 4pm.   Conservation - by Helen Griffiths >16 yrs  Big change begins with a few small acts. CONSERVATION -Let’s face the facts. Make time to care, it’s not that hard But what to do? Love your backyard! Stop! Take a look; treasure your space And then your world’s a better place.  …continue reading →

Legends of Conservation Mountain Adventure Race for kids

Saturday October 14 - briefing at 9.30am, starts 10am - finishes midday.  This event is aimed at primary and intermediate kids and their adult helpers. If you have a family team and one or two of your family are at high school that’s okay - they can be in your team. Teams: -Your team may be a school team, a family team or a group of friends. -You can have up to 6 people in your team but two of these must be adults over 18. -This means a 6 person team will…continue reading →

Toutouwai release an environmental wake-up call

As he prepares to join other volunteers to monitor toutouwai/robin on the Mounga, Hoani Eriwata reflects on the importance of teaching our young people about the importance of being environmental guardians. Releasing toutouwai/North Island robin on Mt Taranaki was an environmental wake-up call, according to Hoani Eriwata. “It was a spiritual moment - a family connection,” admits the Te Atiawa iwi representative. “The closest thing we can do to get back to nature is introducing species to the Mounga.” Hoani travelled to Pureora Forest (Ngati Rereahu) to help catch 50 birds that were…continue reading →

Mounga visits inspiring young people

Rangatahi (young people) are being given the chance to explore Mount Taranaki through a new wellness project that aims to increase their connection to the mountain. Taranaki Mounga is considering how to best support the pilot health project which is a joint venture between local health provider Tui Ora and Department of Conservation (DOC). The project is boosting 10-12-year-olds self-worth which is crucial to communities, says Devon Intermediate Principal Jenny Gellen. “It’s an awakening as the kids don’t realise their potential and now they’re learning,” says Mrs Gellen. Being taken on field trips…continue reading →

Volunteers wanted for bird monitoring

Taranaki Mounga and Rotokare Scenic Reserve Trust are calling on the public to help out with bird monitoring to gauge the success of recent bird translocations. In the run up to the spring breeding season, both Rotokare and Taranaki Mounga want to get an accurate idea of the toutouwai/robin population on Mt Taranaki and hihi and toutouwai populations at Rotokare. We are calling on volunteers to help out by monitoring lines on both Mt Taranaki and at the Rotokare Reserve looking and listening out for birds. Rotokare Scenic Reserve Trust Site Manager Fiona…continue reading →

Rat trapping helping bring forest back to life

The sight of bright orange berries littering the forest floor on Mt Taranaki is an encouraging sign the Mounga is taking its first steps towards coming back to life. These photos showing Comprosma berries on the ground were taken in the area of the national park where 50 toutouwai/robin were released in April. A network of 2,160 Goodnature A24 self resetting rat traps have been deployed over 1,000ha in the area – the largest network of these traps in the world. Taranaki Mounga Project Manager Sean Zieltjes and DOC Senior Biodiversity Ranger Emily King…continue reading →

World’s largest rat trapping network completed by community

We were absolutely delighted to have the world's largest ever network of self-resetting rat traps completed today as part of a trapping training day on the Mounga. Thirty traps were installed to complete the network of 2,160 traps over 1,000ha on the mountain. It is the largest area of the rat traps ever deployed and was set-up to protect the 50 toutouwai/robin we recently released on Mt Taranaki after a 110 year absence. Project Director for Taranaki Mounga, Jan Hania, says the trapping training day provided an opportunity for the community to upskill and…continue reading →

Taranaki conservation projects win at Green Ribbon awards

Taranaki Mounga is honoured to have won the Philanthropy and Partnership category in this years Green Ribbon Awards. The awards are New Zealand’s most prestigious environmental awards and recognise exceptional work to conserve New Zealand’s unique environment and species for generations to come. Taranaki Mounga chairman Jamie Tuuta says he was delighted to accept the award amongst so many deserving environmental groups. “Our fellow finalists Genesis Energy Whio Forever and Project Crimson have long track records in protecting New Zealand’s environment and I would like to acknowlege their great work. Taranaki Mounga works in collaboration with many…continue reading →

Taranaki Mounga finalist in Green Ribbon Awards

Environmental restoration project Taranaki Mounga is delighted to have been named a finalist in the 2017 prestigious Green Ribbon Environmental Awards. Taranaki Mounga joins Genisis Energy Whio Forever and Project Crimson’s Treemendous School Makeover as finalists in the Philanthropy and Partnership category. This category recognises the important role that partnerships and philanthropy play in helping achieve environment and conservation outcomes. Taranaki Mounga Director Jan Hania says it is humbling to be recognised so early into the project which will ecologically transform an area including Egmont National Park and offshore islands of Taranaki over…continue reading →

Myrtle Rust in Taranaki – what you should know

The fungal plant disease myrtle rust (Austropuccinia psidii) has been confirmed at Waitara in Taranaki and Kerikeri in Northland by the Ministry for Primary Industries (MPI) in May 2017. Myrtle rust can have serious consequences for various species of plants in the myrtle family, including New Zealand native plants such as: Pōhutukawa Ramarama Rata Rōhutu Mānuka Swamp maire Kānuka   Introduced plants including, feijoa, eucalypts and bottle brushes are also susceptible to myrtle rust. DOC is working closely with MPI trying to restrict the spread of the disease. DOC staff are actively looking…continue reading →

Taranaki Kiwi Trust plays vital role in rebuilding Mt Taranak’s kiwi population

Taranaki Mounga is delighted to be working with the Taranaki Kiwi Trust on its project to re-establish a viable kiwi population on Mt Taranaki. The Otorohanga Captive breeding programme released five adult kiwi into Egmont National Park on Saturday 13 May. All five kiwi were fitted with transmitters before entering their new homes. “Monitoring these birds provides an opportunity to gain valuable information about how the Western Brown Kiwi responds post release, which can help with decisions about future kiwi releases, both on M.t Taranaki but also in areas with small founding populations”, said…continue reading →

Taranaki locals needed for citizen science project

Taranaki Mounga wants the public to report sightings of the 50 toutouwai/robin that were released on Mt Taranaki last month. The robins were translocated from Pureora Forest Park to the northern slopes of Mt Taranaki after a 110 year absence from the mountain.  Taranaki Mounga director Jan Hania says there have already been reports of toutouwai being seen near Holly Hut and the Ahukawakawa Swamp near the Pouakai ranges. “Locals can help us better protect the toutouwai/robin by letting us know where they see them.  The best thing is the birds are really quite friendly, especially if you scuff…continue reading →

Project Hotspot a blueprint for citizen science

Taranaki Mounga’s new citizen science project to track toutouwai/robin in Taranaki is based on a sucessful project launched by Project Hotspot to support the conservation of threatened coastal species in the region.  Ask Dr Emily Roberts what the key to Project Hotspot’s success is and she will tell you it all began with one specific species - Orca. “Orca have really been a great point of interest. They are so charasmatic and to be able to come up with positive outcomes that can help orca and other species has really harnessed peoples imaginations,”…continue reading →

Great neigbours contribute to translocation success

As the saying goes “everyone needs good neighbours” and Taranaki Mounga certainly has nearby Rotokare Scenic Reserve Trust to thank, in a large part, for the success of the recent toutouwai/robin release. Rotokare staff and volunteers have so far spent an estimated 1,300 volunteer hours helping with the toutouwai translocation. Along with DOC, Taranaki Mounga and iwi they were involved in supporting the planning, pre-feeding and catching of birds at Pureora Forest, the translocation, and post-release monitoring. Sanctuary Manager Simon Collins says helping other conservation projects is part of the ethos of the…continue reading →

50 toutouwai/robin now call Mt Taranaki home

A further 14 toutouwai/North Island robin have been released on Mt Taranaki on Tuesday 11 April, meaning a total of 50 birds have been translocated from Pureora Forest Park to Mt Taranaki in the last 3 days. The toutouwai are the first species to be returned by environmental project Taranaki Mounga.  36 birds were released on the northern slopes of the mountain on Sunday, and this further release brings the total to 50. Reports from people walking in the release area a day after the first release were that the forest was alive with the sound…continue reading →
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