Waitakere Branch Walks and Talks

Saturday 25th March 10 am – 1 pm

Laingholm Weed Walk and Working Bee.
Meet at 9.45 am by the Fishing Club, Sandy’s Parade, Laingholm.

Join us in Laingholm, Weed Capital of Auckland! In our walk, led by Doreen Sunman (who writes about the “Weed of the Month” in the Western Leader) we’ll identify the top ten weeds for Waitakere (and will give you a free brochure to remember them). Pest plants are a major ecological problem in the Ranges, and only by working together we can tackle these invasive plants. What better way to celebrate March Weed Month than with a Working Bee? After morning tea we’ll get started on cleaning up one unsightly corner. We’ll rescue the native plants from below the weeds and work up an appetite for the free sausage sizzle afterwards. Wear sturdy shoes. Bring gloves, secateurs (if you have them), a hat and jacket, sunscreen and insect repellent and morning tea. For more information contact: Doreen Sunman  817 6486  dlsunman@xtra.co.nz

Our flagship project Ark in the Park turns 15 this year and we want to share our story with everyone!
The first activity is a suite of guided walks to discover the results of years of volunteers working at predator control: a flourishing bush and rare reintroduced birds.

Saturday night 25th March:  Sunset and night walk. Our experts will show you the Auckland City Walk at sunset and in the dark, trying to find the nocturnal animals that inhabit our bush, finishing with insect specialist Robert Hoare's famous contraption to attract moths and night insects...maybe you'll even see a giant green puriri moth! Park at Cascades Car Park, end of Falls Road. Bring a torch, sturdy shoes, a jacket and your friends. – booking mandatory at 15yearsArk@gmail.com. NOW FULLY BOOKED!
Sunday morning 26th March:  Listen to the Dawn Chorus at Ark in the Park with our experts highlighting the different birds. Maybe you’ll even hear a ‘Grey Ghost’, a kokako with its haunting song, one of the species re-introduced in the Waitakere Ranges.  Bring a torch, sturdy shoes, a jacket and your friends. Park at carpark at Cascades, then carpool, meet at 6.30 am  – booking mandatory at 15yearsArk@gmail.com. NOW FULLY BOOKED!
Sunday walks  26th March:  Guided Walks from 10 – 3 pm. Continuous as soon as there are 10 – 12 people. Come to our stall at the Cascade Kauri Car Park and our walks will start from there. Our volunteers and experts will take you around the Auckland City Walk to highlight how special this area is. – no booking necessary.

Free but donations/koha towards our conservation work appreciated.

Third ThursdayTalk, 20th April 7:30pm: Sandra Murray, Environmental Consultant and co-ordinator for the New Zealand Product Stewardship Council

Sharing Responsibility for Waste

Sandra Murray discusses the problem of waste in New Zealand and explains ‘product stewardship'. We used to use glass and paper packaging, and take our bottles back to the dairy, pub or milkman for a cash refund so we could use them over and over again. Bottle drives funded our kids clubs and litter was uncommon.
Then we fell in love with plastic and other new products, abandoning glass for the allure of lightweight, single use packaging. Inventing new products without a thought for what would happen when we no longer wanted them. We revelled in ‘disposable’. Were enthralled by a bevy of quick loves – TV’s, PC’s, mobile phones, CFL’s, plastic bags, batteries, cheap toys and cheaper rubbish.
Now is the ‘morning after’, where we look around in horror at the litter and dead seabirds, see our landfills and rivers filling up fast with rubbish and our plastic love turning into a sour toxic mess trashing our land, food, waterways and oceans. Can we turn back time and bring back those take-back schemes? What would they look like today? Would they work?  Venue: Kelston Community Centre, cnr Awaroa/Great North Rd. Non members welcome, join us for supper afterwards. Koha appreciated to cover hall hire. For further information ph Liz 833 4145 lizanstey@hotmail.com

This talk is part of a nationwide speaking tour by the NZPSC to promote independent, scientific information about product stewardship solutions in New Zealand.

Thursday 18th May 7:30pm: Waitakere Forest & Bird AGM and Guest Speaker Fraser McConnell

Our annual General Meeting with reports from the chair, treasurer and all the projects, followed by the election of the committee.
We are always looking for new  people to join our committee. If you have an interest in protecting our environment and feel you may be interested in assisting our committee in the valuable role they play then please give our chairperson, Annalily van den Broeke a call or send her an email. She will be delighted to meet you and talk about how you may be involved. Ph 832-6408 or info@artants.co.nz

 Speaker: Fraser  McConnell- SquarkSquad
This is a start-up social enterprise engaging New Zealanders to protect and sustain our unique birdlife. Fraser will talk about how they aim to connect people with sanctuaries by a mobile app that gives them the ability to collectively invest in sensor-connected traps in aid of sanctuary projects. Venue: Kelston Community Centre, cnr Awaroa/Great North Rd.  Non members welcome, join us for supper afterwards. No charge but koha appreciated to cover hall hire. For further information ph Liz 0274 762732 lizanstey@hotmail.com

Third Thursday Talk: 15th June 7:30pm: Dean Baigent- Mercer

The Forgotten Forests of Northland

Dean is Forest & Bird’s Northland Conservation Advocate and has been described as New Zealand’s dread-locked version of David Attenborough with attitude. In Northland, many great native forests and their wildlife are collapsing. When the sun goes down, thousands of possums relentlessly consume the forest canopy, slowly killing ancient forest giants  and rats consume the native birds, insects and lizards. Dean will talk about the waves of extinctions in NZ up to the current collapse of Northland's native forests and how he and others are working to turn the tide.  Venue: 7:30pm Kelston Community Centre, cnr Awaroa/Great North Rd.  Non members welcome, join us for supper afterwards. Koha appreciated to cover hall hire. For further information ph Liz 0274 762732 lizanstey@hotmail.com

Waitakere Forest & Bird Website: