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No dogs on the beach - updated. PDF Print
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Written by WDC   
Wednesday, 06 January 2016
dog ban map

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Ngunguru Sandspit Reserve and Coast PDF Print
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Written by WDC and DoC   
Wednesday, 06 January 2016
Ngunguru Sandspit Reserve and Coast document

Here's a document that sets out what restrictions, particularly for dogs, exist on the Ngunguru coast, including the sandspit.

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Department of Conservation Report for NSaPS 2015 AGM PDF Print
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Events
Written by Sue Reed-Thomas, DoC Conservation Partnerships Manager, Northland District   
Monday, 21 December 2015

I would appreciate you tendering, on my behalf, the Department’s apologies as we will not be sending a staff member to attend.

I want to assure you that the Department considers the Ngunguru Sandspit Protection Society as a partner in conservation for this area, even though we have chosen not to attend this particular meeting.  I thought it would be useful to share what the Department is currently doing that reflects this.

  • The Department’s Conservation Partnerships Director for Northern North Island, Nicola Douglas, and myself recently met with the executive committee.  The Executive shared the aspirations of the society, including its desire to work in partnership with community, nga hapu o Pimanu, and the Department.  Nicola is supportive of us developing this relationship locally, and even provided some ideas about how this three way partnership has been achieved in another location.
  • The Department invited the NSaPS to submit a full application to the Community Conservation Partnerships Fund after receiving its expression of interest.  This application is currently being considered and decisions are expected to be announced by the end of August.
  • The Department and NSaPS are developing a management agreement, which describes the relationship we seek to have and will authorise the Society to undertake certain activities on the sandspit.  A full draft is expected to be sent to the Society within the next two weeks.  A key component of the agreement will be ensuring health and safety of volunteers and public while undertaking these activities, so the Society will need to develop a health and safety plan.  A template for this will be sent next week, and the Department will offer some support to the Society to understand this if needed.
  • Once the agreement is signed, a Department staff member will be named to manage this relationship in accordance with the Agreement.  They will become a key point of contact for the Society.  They will implement an annual planning process with the Society so that each year we are both clear about what the Society seeks to do, ensuring they are authorised to do that, and which of those things we might be working on together.

The Department is looking forward to entering a new phase of its work with the Ngunguru Sandspit Protection Society and the Tangata Whenua of the area.

Please feel free to share my comments with those attending the AGM.

Naku noa na

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Report from the AGM, 2015 PDF Print
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Events
Written by NSaPS   
Monday, 21 December 2015

The Past

After a land exchange between Crown and private owners part of the Ngunguru Sandspit became Public Conservation Land in 2011. The Ngunguru Sandspit Protection Society had led a long, intensive campaign to save this iconic site from inappropriate development. There remained 16 ha of the Sandspit at the base of the adjacent mountain which is in private ownership, at risk from development but in 2011 the community was rejoicing in the success and keen to start work removing weeds and pests. The 83 ha of the Scenic Reserve was under DOC administration but a shared management system was planned for the future with tangata whenua, the community and DOC as partners.

It took longer than expected to get all parties together but the agreement has now been reached that the most urgent need was to work together in order to save the flora and fauna from further degradation. The announcement was made at the 2014 AGM by Hone Tana who was mandated representative of the Te Waiariki Trust Board. We had the go-ahead on behalf of Te Waiariki, Ngati Korora, Ngati Takapari and signed by leaders, Pereri Mahanga, Hone Tana and Paratene Te Manu Wellington.

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No Dogs on the beach PDF Print
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Written by Whangarei District Council   
Thursday, 10 December 2015
image from WDC document regarding dogs on local beaches

In 2013, new rules about dogs on the beach were introduced.

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Community conservation boost for Sandspit PDF Print
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Dune restoration
Written by Linda Donaldson   
Sunday, 15 November 2015

Plans to free Ngunguru Sandspit, Pii Manu, of weed and animal pests have been boosted through a $15,000 grant from the DOC Community Fund.

The funding is tagged specifically for removal of the wilding pines and will become available for the financial year starting July 2016.

Ngunguru Sandspit Protection Society’s (NSaPS) bid for help towards a larger restoration project coincided with DOC receiving the largest number of applications ever to the fund.

DOC says the fund is directed at practical, on-the-ground projects.

“These projects will maintain and restore the diversity of our natural heritage and enable more people to participate in recreation, enjoy and learn from our historic places, and engage with and value the benefits of conservation.”

The money will enable the first big, joint step of hapu/iwi, NSaPs and the community working together to restore Ngunguru Sandspit, Pii Manu.

Contractors will be necessary on the Sandspit due to the nature of the work and stringent new Health and Safety Regulations.

After the major work of removing the pines and getting rid of noxious weeds is done there will be plenty of scope for volunteers to help by hand pulling seedling weeds to prevent them from becoming a problem later.

Please treat this environmental, historical and cultural treasure with respect. There is an all-year-round Whangarei District Council ban on dogs on Ngunguru Sandspit beaches for conservation purposes. Also, DOC regulations for the Reserve on the Sandspit include: no dogs, vehicles or bikes, camping, fires, litter or horses.

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Bylaw important for bird conservation PDF Print
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Ecology
Written by Linda Donaldson   
Sunday, 15 November 2015

The Ngunguru Sandspit Shorebird Count, 14 November 2015 report, records lower bird numbers than usual.

This is disappointing and now is a good time to remind people of the WDC bylaw for the Ngunguru Sandspit/Horahora area.

Dogs are prohibited on the entire beach area but are allowed by permit only on the Department of Conservation Land.

DoC's sandspit sign

It is also very important for people to observe the DoC bird nesting signs (the nesting sites are not individually marked or taped off) and people need to be aware that the nests can be where you least expect them and the birds can be nesting from now through to March.

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New DoC signs about nesting birds PDF Print
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Ecology
Written by Sophie Edwards   
Tuesday, 03 November 2015
DoC's sandspit sign

DoC has provided new signage that will be placed in key positions near and on the sandspit to make people aware of endangered birds' nesting sites on the Ngunguru sandspit.

While our variable oystercatchers and dotterels might appear numerous to some, they are in fact threatened with extinction, so all care needs to be taken to protect them.

DoC's sandspit sign

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Te Reo o te Raki - Paratene Te Manu (Sonny) Wellington PDF Print
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Local
Written by Lois Williams, Radio NZ National   
Friday, 23 October 2015
Lois Williams at Ngunguru

In the final segment of the series Te Reo o te Raki (The voices of the north) Lois Williams sits down for a chat with Kaumatua Paratene Te Manu (Sonny) Wellington who works tirelessly for his community. From his work as a Chaplain to organising the Kaumatua line dancing sessions, So what makes him tick? Lois finds out.

The quiet kaumatua of the Tutukaka Coast is a busy man. The first time I tried he was booked up several days ahead doing useful stuff like visiting old friends in hospital, attending the school concert; meetings and trimming a mate's trees. He's only 82, after all, he as happy to take charge of the clippers as his mate is apparently not up to it these days. In the end he tells me "Come along to the marae tomorrow - we'll be line-dancing. We can talk there". And so we did, leaving Sonny's wife Rose to ably lead the boot-scooting seniors.

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Dune Habitat Workshop - a great learning experience PDF Print
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Projects
Written by Loren Hope   
Tuesday, 20 October 2015

An interesting, invigorating and very enjoyable Dunes Habitat workshop was attended by 70 year 5-6 students, parents and community members last week. The workshop, hosted by Ngunguru School and delivered by Northland Regional Council, saw students involved in hands on learning about how a dune habitat functions, the plant and animal biodiversity of our dunes, and pest plants and animals which threaten our coastline.

The workshop, which was very well run by Lisa Forester, Laura Shaft and Sara Brill from NRC, was an exciting step towards the community working together to protect and restore this unique habitat. The school plans to 'adopt' the care for the northern area of Pii Manu with student kaitiaki working towards managing the current Pea Shrub issue and investigating and dealing with other pest species into the future.

Thank you to those who attended and/or had input into the day. The students look forward to working with more of you in the future.

If you are interested in becoming involved with the efforts of Ngunguru School students in working towards community conservation please email Loren Hope lhope(at)ngunguru.school.nz

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