Thursday, 23 April 2009

WARRINGTON RESERVE GROUP

by Karen Hobday

Although we haven't written a column in a while the Warrington Reserve
Group has been busy over the past months.

We held a workshop at the Warrington Surf Club on 16 November 2008
about the human impact on wildlife and the beach environment. The
workshop was attended by 21 people representing 12 groups and
organisations involved in Beach Care - from Waikouaiti to Taieri
Mouth. The network that developed out of this workshop includes a
further 6 groups so far. We share information and ideas and will
sometimes work collaboratively on shared interests. Along with a
wealth of experience within the network there is a strong focus on
pragmatic solutions to spaces shared by wildlife and humans. Thank you
to Waikouaiti Coast Community Board for supporting this initiative.

In September last year we received an award for participating in the
Keep Dunedin Beautiful clean up week. Then in March this year, Seaweek
had a rubbish collection site at Warrington Beach for the first time.
All rubbish collected was weighed and prizes were won by local people.
The Warrington Reserve Group collected over 60 kg of rubbish and we
won 50 plants from Blueskin Nurseries. Thank you to everyone who
collected rubbish with us for these two events, helping to raise
awareness and clean up our natural environment.

On Anzac Day afternoon we were pleased to participate in an Otago Tree
Society Planting Day. Our two groups will continue to collaborate so
we can support their ongoing planting of the Esplanade embankment.
Thanks to all of you who donated your time and energy to this project.
A special mention to Community Corrections groups for clearing the
site.

Please put 26 July at 10:30 am in your diary or on your fridge for our
upcoming planting days. We need your help for continued success in
recreating a native plant windbreak for the Domain.

We've had a really good success rate with our plants. This is partly
due to careful selection of appropriate hardy plants and to good luck
- we've had more rain than usual. We are grateful to Task Force Green
Groups for watering and to Community Corrections for weeding the site.

Three other sites were chosen by the DCC and planted last winter with
plants left over from planting projects in Dunedin. Two of these sites
are growing well. They are beside the road to the bay where there is a
reasonable amount of soil. The third site on the Domain has been less
successful. However, this was to be expected as the site is sandy and
exposed to drying winds.

DCC Parks Officer, Renee Gordon, is keen to support ongoing planting.
This year she has provided 100 natives to be planted along the edges
of existing vegetation in the wider Domain area. She has ordered
individual plant protectors so we won't have to fence off whole areas
again.

Renee would also like to plant some test sites of pikao (or pingao) at
Warrington. Previous plantings years ago were gobbled by rabbits so
this time it will be fenced. We are looking into possible suitable
sites so if you see a fenced off area in the dunes it may well be a
pikao test site. This is a native sand-binding sedge plant. The marram
grass that holds our dunes together is an introduced plant.

We are always interested in your feedback and questions. Anyone
interested is welcome to join our group. We also have Warrington
Reserve Group Outreach membership for anyone who wishes to receive our
minutes. This enables us to get more detailed feedback from anyone who
doesn't wish to attend meetings.

Contact: Karen 4822762

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