Manawatu Volunteer Day

Replacing ground cover in Kiwi enclosures

Twice a year for the last couple of years the Manawatu Branch has committed a team to volunteer a day of their time to assist at Mt Bruce Pukaha Wildlife Centre.

To those to haven’t ventured to the North Wairarapa recently, Pukaha is a DOC administrated centre dedicated to protecting and preserving native wildlife - kiwi, kaka, weka, tui, eels tuatara and the like.

Surviving on Government funding, grants and donations they are always grateful to see a team of Crombie Lockwood able bodies turn up ready to pitch in and lend a hand to keep the various habitats maintained or create new ones. 

We did just that on 11 November 2015; on arrival split into teams to pull weeds, cut grass and for the really keen, replace the ground cover in three kiwi enclosures.

To keep the environment healthy for our National Bird, the “forest floor” periodically needs to be dug up and removed, replaced with fresh topsoil, raked out, then electronically swept for foreign metal objects (nails etc) which are removed so they don't end up being ingested.

All manual labour – no machinery allowed other than shovels, rakes and wheelbarrows.

The weeders and mowers didn’t get off lightly, the same rules apply so this was all about getting down and dirty with clippers and bare hands.

The team had a great day out of the office and at the end of the day were treated to up close and personal feeding times for the eels and kaka, before heading back to Palmerston North via a quick stop at the Eketahuna Hotel.

If you happen to be cruising SH2 you will find Pukaha 30k north of Masterton - its well worth taking an hour out of the trip and having a look around at some iconic NZ wildlife.

Crombie Lockwood is committed to supporting The Department of Conservation in projects that help with the survival of New Zealand native birds.  The survival story of NZ native birds echoes our philosophy to position our clients to financial survival any insurable event.