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Conservation Innovation Awards entries now open

WWF 2017 Conservation Innovation Awards have now opened for entries on. Three $25,000 prizes will be presented.

Conservation Innovation Awards winners are at the forefront of conservation thinking, with ideas that look set to change the game for New Zealand’s voluntary conservation army and our precious wildlife.

Start getting your entries in! They close on 15 October.

Read more here.

NIWA's National Riparian Restoration Database may need your help

Some of you will have been involved in riparian planting along your coastlines. NIWA is doing a survey to find out what, where, how and how effective those plantings have been. They ask groups to help and will set out the results in a new database. Read NIWA’s request here:

Many hundreds of Kiwis have invested time and energy into restoring New Zealand streams by riparian fencing or planting.

NIWA has begun a project to understand more about the investment Kiwis have made so we can help build better support for riparian restoration in future. We also want to learn more about how stream ecosystems recover after riparian restoration so we can give better guidance on how to design restoration projects so they give the best results for water quality and aquatic animal communities.

To do this we have created the National Riparian Restoration Database (NRRD). We hope this database will become the main source of information on what riparian restoration work has been done around New Zealand. We will use it to develop our research on stream restoration processes, which will involve volunteer “citizen scientists” (yes, we will be looking for people to take part!).

For this we need your help. Would you give 5 minutes to fill out our NRRD online survey at https://riparian.niwa.co.nz/ and also forward this information to anyone you know who has been involved in riparian fencing or planting? No fencing or planting work is too old – in fact for us, old is gold!

Funding for Te Awarua-o-Porirua Harbour Catchment

The Te Awarua-o-Porirua Harbour Catchment Restoration Fund was created to support groups restoring, maintaining or enhancing native vegetation of areas around the Porirua Harbour catchment. It funds some important work restoring natural habitats in their backyards.

It is hoped that this fund will enable groups to:

• Improve the health of the native ecosystems around the catchment area

• Reduce the amount of soil getting into streams and the harbour

• Involve others in their restoration work

• Spread the message that native ecosystems, such as those in and around Te Awarua-o-Porirua Harbour, are in important areas to be protected and cherished

The fund can support up to three years of restoration work and is open for applications in September. The fund is available to all community groups looking to help restore and protect the biodiversity of the beautiful Te Awarua-o-Porirua Harbour and its catchment.

Check out more details and download the application form here.

In Safe Hands - workshops in Wellington and region

On 9 September an In Safe Hands workshop (keeping your volunteers safe and productive) will be held in Wellington. Conservation Volunteers NZ will run a FREE workshop for community groups.

Come and learn how to minimize the risk of accidents when working on your conservation project. This workshop is interactive and introduces participants to the important elements of implementing a sound safety management system based on the In Safe Hands Toolkit. All participants will be provided with both a hard-copy and electronic version of the tool-kit for their group’s use.

To book for this and/or check out other workshops being held in Wellington, check out this site.

This workshop will also be held in Porirua the day after, i.e. 10 September. To book for that one, go here:

Funding granted for Koi Carp project

Pest koi carp will be processed as a native plant fertiliser in a dune restoration programme, Associate Environment Minister Scott Simpson announced today.

The $108,000 grant to the Coastal Restoration Trust, provided through the Community Environment Fund, will see digested koi carp, a pest fish, sourced from Waikato Regional Council’s pilot capture and processing facility, being used as fertiliser in community-based dune restoration programmes.

“This project is about turning an environmental problem into part of an environmental solution. Koi carp are a pest that the Waikato Regional Council was already working to eradicate. This project will take the derived fertiliser and pilot using it to support the growth of native plants on some of our degraded coastal dunes,” Mr Simpson says.

“What impresses me most about this project is that it demonstrates incredible levels of innovation, collaboration and commitment, and addresses not one but a range of environmental issues. All of the parties to the project are to be congratulated.”

Koi carp were introduced as an ornamental fish, but pose a significant threat to freshwater ecosystems by uprooting water plants, lowering water quality and eating insects normally consumed by native fish. Koi carp are considered to be one of the most invasive freshwater fish in the world.

The Trust hopes to see at least 10 coast care groups using Koi carp derived material in their dune restoration programmes by the end of project.

The broader goal of the Trust is to give coastal communities a better understanding of dune systems, the current state of these habitats and practical options for restoration.

The Community Environment Fund provides funding to empower New Zealanders to take environmental action. It support projects that strengthen partnerships, raise public awareness of environmental issues, and encourage community participation in environmental initiatives. The fund has awarded more than $12 million to environmental projects since 2010.

As published on the beehive website.

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