RUSSELL KIWI PROTECTION
Russell Kiwi Protection is an ecological restoration project. It is an initiative of the Russell Landcare Trust, a group of keen locals who are working together to restore and enhance the native biodiversity of the Russell Peninsula, in the Bay of Islands.
For 15 years we have been doing weed control, predator control and native re-planting to enhance habitat for native plants, birds and insects. The Russell Peninsula is now a stronghold for North Island brown kiwi and North Island weka – their calls are part of our daily (and nightly) bird-song – while other endangered birds like pateke (brown teal) and matata (fernbird) are successfully nesting.
As you walk around Russell village and peninsula you’ll see our work on:
- The public walkway to Long Beach
- The stream side at Te Hikuwai wāhi tapu on the Russell Waterfront
- The bush track through the Kororāreka Reserve
- The hillside above Pompallier Mission
- The dunes at Long Beach
- The Bay of Islands Walkway at Uruti, Orongo and Pipiroa Bays
- The walkway at Tapeka from Rewa Place to the beach
Weeds love Russell’s mild, wet, frost-free climate and can rapidly push out and smother native species. We do regular weed-busting on public reserves, to prepare for native replanting and then again to give the new plantings the best chance to thrive.
We are also certified for seed collection on public land managed by the Department of Conservation. Seeds are sent to the Kerikeri Shadehouse for propagation and then replanted back here in their area of origin.
Russell Kiwi Protection is our largest and most ambitious project. It is a big step up for the Trust and is of vital importance to keep our forests, wetlands and coastline full of life.
BRINGING BACK THE BIRDS
Since 2002, Russell Landcare has being doing predator control around Russell Village. We hope that Russell Kiwi Protection, with its expanded and intensified focus on pest control will allow native bird populations to recover, for species re-introductions to occur, and for possible self-introductions from the islands managed by Project Island Song.
FROM LITTLE SEEDS …
Every year on Arbor Day we go tree planting with children from Russell Playcentre and Russell Primary School, and at the end of the year we award one of the school kids the Russell Landcare Award for most outstanding contribution to conservation. There are students graduating from Russell School who’ve planted with us since playcentre. Grown-ups don’t miss out either: we award the Landcare trophy for ‘Best Use of Natives in the Garden’ at the annual Russell Flower Show.
OUR CONSERVATION PARTNERS
We work with other groups and organisations like the Kiwi Foundation, Kiwis4Kiwi, Guardians of the Bay, Russell School, Kerikeri Shadehouse, Kiwi Coast, Living Waters, Fish Forever, Bay of Islands Walkways Trust, Northland Regional Council, CoastCare, FNDC BOI-Whangaroa Community Board and the Department of Conservation on projects on the peninsula and islands including:
Project Island Song
Long Beach dune restoration
Tangatapu wetland restoration
Pipiroa-Te Wahapu Ecological Restoration
Annual Kiwi count