Noticias del proyecto Auckland RENH Kaipatiki Creek Trial - Umbrella Project

19 de septiembre de 2019

Trial suppression of juvenile tree weeds

Trial suppression of juvenile tree weeds by partial breaking and bending down of branches has been surprisingly successful since our ad hoc "necessity is the mother of partial-control intervention" in August 2018, when we first became aware of the huge numbers along the roadside and their rapid growth, pushing aside and overshadowing the mahoe, mapou, karamu and other quick-growing natives there.

We have now photographed and marked with orange tape several dozen specimens, with heights of c.30cmH (previously reduced to this height by partial breaking of leading stem) to .3mH.

Most of these trees are not in the defined Trial Site (where such trees were already marked and photographed) so we have advised the Ecocontract Operations Manager, who will communicate to weed control teams that these specimens are not for intervention.

While documenting and marking the privets we intervened similarly on the few Eleagnus that were encountered along the roadside, and cut all the Japanese honeysuckle within reach. It was pleasing to see native trees once again dominant in the roadside vegetation, with some mature trees showing new growth in areas released during the past year. There are still native trees about 10m high whose canopies remain invaded from further down the bank, but as with the tree weed trial, we have been astonished at the effective suppression of weed trees and vines and the growth of released native plants resulting from our ad hoc interventions during survey.

This has encouraged us to continue to spend those few minutes in passing whenever an opportunity arises to save a native tree from imminent destruction by weeds.

Ingresado el 19 de septiembre de 2019 por kaipatiki_naturewatch kaipatiki_naturewatch | 0 comentarios | Deja un comentario

Native seedlings and sporelings

Here are the photographed and currently uploaded native seedlings and sporelings observed during the Trial so far, whether they are growing in Tradescantia, in ground released from tradescantia or other weeds, or in purely native surroundings:

Ingresado el 19 de septiembre de 2019 por kaipatiki_naturewatch kaipatiki_naturewatch | 0 comentarios | Deja un comentario

17 de septiembre de 2019

A preliminary selection of currently-uploaded observations

showing various aspects of Initial survey and Trial interventions in these locations, ordered from oldest to most recent observations (with more yet to be uploaded):

NB Subsequent posts will illustrate specific aspects of both surveys and the Methodology Trial.

Zone Bd:

at Kaipatiki Roadside including the roadside canopy and the start of the path that leads to both the steps up to Valecrest Place, and the Native Plant Trail along the stream

the bank below Kaipatiki Rd from a few metres below the roadside, to a few metres above the streamside - these views often incorporating the adjacent roadside or streamside

the stream in 2018-2019

the pathside flora of the Native Plant Trail from its entry on Kaipatiki Rd, to its sharp turn left along the stream just below the steps up to Valecrest Pl (unfortunately the observations cannot be placed in geograhic order, but if time permits an animation will be made in the future, to be contrasted with one made in 1997-2000)

The Tradescantia of Zone Bd will be documented in selected views of Kaipatiki Rd streamside (or before intervention and during manual control)

and at the Witheford streamside, (or pre-intervention and during manual control).

Zone Ca:
the bank below Kaipatiki Road

at Kaipatiki Roadside

the streamside below Kaipatiki Roadside

the Witheford streamside

Tradescantia monitoring on the Kaipatiki Rd streamside

and the Kaipatiki Rd bank above the stream and below the roadside

Manual interventions within the 2019 trial site on weed invasions other than Tradescantia - :

in Zone Bd at Kaipatiki Roadside

Ingresado el 17 de septiembre de 2019 por kaipatiki_naturewatch kaipatiki_naturewatch | 0 comentarios | Deja un comentario

16 de septiembre de 2019

Researching the effects of poison used in rat bait stations in the Reserve's Ecocontract

We found a very bright blue poisoned rat in the canopy margin of our volunteer Eskdale Reserve Trial, Gahnia Grove, stimulating our interest in the poison used and the possibility of bird and insect deaths due to either primary or secondary poisoning.

UPDATE We have been informed that Brodifacoum is not used in urban reserves due to the secondary poisoning issue. The baits being used currently are Bromadiolone or Diphacinone.

We are particularly interested as we have had bait stations at our home for some years, and - for whatever reason - no longer see wetas, and waxeyes only rarely.

We have plenty of tui at home, but they do not catch insects on the wing, and don't ground-feed at our home due to a dog. They do ground-feed on the banks of the Kaipatiki Creek and

in our Gahnia Grove site.

Ingresado el 16 de septiembre de 2019 por kaipatiki_naturewatch kaipatiki_naturewatch | 0 comentarios | Deja un comentario

15 de septiembre de 2019

Disturbing dumping of animal parts

See this observation of what looks like a fresh deerskin, skinned frame with one leg attached, and one intact foreleg, with a little guts nearby, and two dead fish, one gutted.

One of the downsides of Reserve work is the unexpected confrontation with a variety of human activities, thankfully usually after the humans have left the site.

While we are not opposed to hunting for food, we are disturbed by the disrespect shown to this animal, or animals, suggesting the possibility of inhumane slaughter or even cruelty.

Ingresado el 15 de septiembre de 2019 por kaipatiki_naturewatch kaipatiki_naturewatch | 0 comentarios | Deja un comentario

11 de septiembre de 2019

Couch identified - and spreading where Tradescantia was removed

The roadside holds a little Couch grass (Cynodon dactylon), observed in March and suppressed with Tradescantia, then observed in September emerging nearby where Tradescantia had been removed. (You can switch between the two linked Observations using the "Linked Observation" Field at lower right of each observation).

This grass was seen in March around the base of one harakeke at the roadside, and in September, when wet ground allowed a short section of rhizome to be pulled up and examined. Though the leaves are soft and fine, we find the rhizomes unbreakable.

It is within 20-30m of a widespread invasion in 1999 which followed virtual eradication of kikuyu for tree planting. The 1999 invasion was presumably mulched or otherwise suppressed until shaded out by the close-planted trees. The current occurrence is likely a remnant which survived at the roadside beyond the shade, where it is presumablylimited by the deep dense Tradescantia all around it, and by mowing of the grass verge. In March it was flourishing at the base of the harakeke where mowers cannot reach.

This occurrence is now being suppressed (and hopefully eventually rotted) with Tradescantia in front of the harakeke, but has emerged nearby where Tradescantia was removed.

Plan: Restore deep Tradescantia as mulch where this is emergent, and monitor.

Ingresado el 11 de septiembre de 2019 por kaipatiki_naturewatch kaipatiki_naturewatch | 0 comentarios | Deja un comentario

03 de septiembre de 2019

Correction to our use of the Field "Kaipatiki Creek restoration site" with Value "Reserve""

We have recently learned that about half the Kaipatiki Creek Restoration site of 1997-00, from roadside to stream in the upstream half of the site, has not been legally classified as a Reserve, though it is formally recognised as a Significant Ecological Area.

Many observations throughout the restoration site have been given the Field Value "Reserve". It should therefore be noted that many of these observations are in fact not within a legal Reserve, but streambanks/roadside "owned" by Auckland Transport. We will update this Field Value as appropriate to correct this.

We understand the "roadside" area has had no ecological survey or maintenance since road reconstruction in 1999, but in the future is to be managed by Auckland Council through the Ecocontract for Witheford Reserve.

Ingresado el 03 de septiembre de 2019 por kaipatiki_naturewatch kaipatiki_naturewatch | 0 comentarios | Deja un comentario

28 de agosto de 2019

Report for June -August 2019

Hours spent March-August 2019
Misc- 2
Liaison - 71.5
Research - 9.5
Data (filing, editing and uploading and curating photos and iNaturalist observations) - 276
Site Monitoring - 42.5
Sitework (weeding and composting, ground covering for moisture retention, protection of soil and adjacent vegetation along paths) - 108.25
Funding application preparation - 10.25
Admin 52.25

Total 532.25hrs

Summary of activities to date:
Liaison with contract managers re weed control, path maintenance. Clarified path width and clearance protocols, mapped and cordoned herbicide-free Trial site

Litter collected, dumpings reported

Streamside vegetation and stream formations observed and compared with photo observations of same locations 1997-2000, noting incidences of increased diversity and density, plant community/density/species loss, weed-suppressed potential revegetation, erosion, scouring and pathside trampling.

Weed seedlings uprooted, juveniles suppressed, trees released from vine weeds

Native seedlings and ferns, seedlings released thoughout most of the Trial site

Streamside forest tradescantia piled for decomposition (will regrow rapidly on streambanks where layered in sediment).

Roadside soil moisture assessed and monitored. Tradescantia as ground cover reinforced at roadside by removal of more from streamside, piled on roadside bank for moisture retention and humus creation, staged removal planned.

Initial survey of entire site (c.2km long) - summarised in our June 2019 report here:

In due course we will upload and provide links to more of the many observations made so far of the current Tradescantia trial sites before, during and after intervention, and the seedlings, juveniles and ferns observed growing in it to various depths.

We aim to eventually provide easy comparison of photos showing changes over time. Images of "Wide views" are not encouraged in iNaturalist, whose focus is primarily the identification of Species. However, we have been advised of the "code" with which, once mastered, we will be able to add side-by-side images of any sort, including wide views, directly to our posts in the iNat Project "Journal".

Several aspects of this Project to date are discussed in more detail in separate Posts:

Ingresado el 28 de agosto de 2019 por kaipatiki_naturewatch kaipatiki_naturewatch | 0 comentarios | Deja un comentario

Trial Site Zones and their subdivisions - Background to Zone names and Fields

The Kaipatiki Ecological Restoration Project site of 1997-99 was recorded in images filed by geographical zones from Aa to Zd, ie from its piped outfall under Easton Park Parade at its Kaipatiki Rd intersection, to the coastal cliff point where a road bridge joins Kaipatiki and Beachhaven roads above the Kaipatiki Estuary.

These Zones are roughly-parallel segments of the stream's length - if the stream were a railway line, the Zones' adjoining boundaries would be railway line sleepers.

For 2019-20 we identified a Tradescantia Trial site extending from Zones Bd to Zone Fa.

Our iNaturalist observations are collected in the Project for their Zone according to their GPS coordinates either as recorded by digital device or as assigned manually at upload to iNat. Each Zone Projects contains all the observations falling within that Zone, from Kaipatiki roadside, down the bank, across the stream and up the opposite bank to the boundary of the Witheford Reserve.

Each Zone holds a similar range of ecologies based on proximity to road and sunlight, canopy by planted natives, canopy by wild revegetation, steepness, proximity to the stream, and soil type from clay to sedimentary sandstone.

AAfter upload, each observation is assigned a Zone Field (visible by clicking on the "Fields" tab at lower right of observations). This Field contains values corresponding to location in relation to road, planted/wild canopy, contour, stream.

eg "Zone CaKSS" = Zone Ca, on the Kaipatiki StreamSide.
"Zone FbTWWS" = Zone Fb (ie quite a bit further downstream) on the Witheford (ie opposite bank to Kaipatiki) StreamSide, on or beside Taraire Walk (the Native Plant Trail).

Since Zones overlap with one another, Zone Fields overlap with one another, and wide camera views often cross boundaries, neither Zone Fields nor Values are completely exclusive, and are also sometimes incorrectly assigned due to errors in GPS recording, file management or during upload.

However, in general we find it gives a useful and often fascinating picture of the distribution of species and their formation of communities, spontaneous spread over time, and individual or group decline. We have devoted much time to exploring the potential of iNaturalist's various multiple-filter Search functions, and the labelling of observations to enable them to be found in various types of Search. We hope that the time spent so far will speed up production of, and make more easily-accessible for a variety of purposes, our observations of the site and of the restoration methodology applied throughout the Kaipatiki Creek restoration site in 1997-2000 and in the RENH Project Trial Site currently.

Ingresado el 28 de agosto de 2019 por kaipatiki_naturewatch kaipatiki_naturewatch | 0 comentarios | Deja un comentario

Background to this Trial of manual Tradescantia removal

In 1999 Tradescantia was deep and dense throughout most streambanks throughout this length. Hand removal from most points of the streambank revealed ferns and the seedlings of many native angiosperms and monocots, and resulted in their rapid growth and proliferation along the streambanks, in islets in the stream, and under streamside native tree canopy where it existed.

The 1997-99 restoration was by removal of exotic plants from within native canopy outwards to its dripline, using available leaf litter and other natural debris as replacement ground cover where available, without interference with canopied soil other than superficial disturbance in the uprooting of weeds.

Any weed material unsuitable or not required for ground cover was piled for decomposition by either rotting or drying, placed as mulch along the dripline, where it was easily monitored for regrowth, and the material withdrawn further outwards as needed for ongoing development of any native seedlings and sporelings in the dripline.

The community's view of the site in 997 was as a rubbish-filled, weed-covered stormwater drain, and this, combined with the common scepticism of the possibility of manual control of Tradescantia, led us to assuage doubts on both counts by removing Tradescantia completely from the entire length of dripline, revealing a diverse native habitat.

On low banks near the stream sporelings and seedlings developed rapidly, producing dense lush native vegetation. Further downstream and away from the water's edge, the total removal of Tradescantia over large areas resulted in bare clay which hardened in summer.

The complete Tradescantia control in these areas may thus have slowed or halted regeneration, and in one such area, zone Ua-Vb, the 1999 outer canopy margin was observed compacted and almost bare of seedlings in August-December 2018, despite being buffered since 1999 by several metres width of native tree planting.

This area was also observed to be notably free of Tradescantia, but it has not been possible to determine whether there has been any control, either manual or chemical, of Tradescantia during the intervening years, so permanent eradication of Tradescantia from those area by the 1997-99 manual removal and any subsequent Kaipatiki Project interventions cannot be confirmed in this study.

Further downstream on estuarine banks, from August-December 2018 we observed native seedlings of many species beside or amongst light to moderate coverage by Tradescantia both at saltmarsh edge and on the wide, level banks canopied by karaka, mahoe, kanuka and pin oaks, from zones Va to Za.

Ingresado el 28 de agosto de 2019 por kaipatiki_naturewatch kaipatiki_naturewatch | 0 comentarios | Deja un comentario