I am Peter Fergusson, the Development Coordinator for MET.
I am married to Jude and have 3 adult children who all live and work in the Whakatane area. I have lived in Whakatane for much of my adult life after graduating from Victoria University with a BA, BSc.
I am a Biology teacher and started my teaching career at Edgecumbe College in the late 70s and then, after stints in Kaitaia and at Te Araroa returned to the Bay in the early 80s to teach at Whakatane High school. I was Head of Science at Whakatane High School for over 20 years but last year resigned and am now working in a 50% part-time role, teaching Marine Studies and Science.
In my teaching career at WHS I was awarded two Royal Society Teacher Fellowships, one in 1996 and the second in 2006. Both of them involved working with DOC on Ecological Restoration projects. One at Lake Tamurenui and in 2006 I worked on the Mainland Island project in Te Urewera.
I have always been interested in conservation and ecological restoration and in 2000 we brought a life style block in Awakeri that has a WDC covenant on the bush remnant. Over the last ten years we have been restoring this by replanting and undertaking pest and weed control.
We have also been involved in a number of volunteer conservation projects over the last 20years. I was a DOC volunteer for many years and have done a lot of work on Whale Island. I currently am working with Bill Clark’s Onepu care group, Fish and Game, DOC and the Regional Council on the restoration of Lake Tamurenui. This project is funded by EBOP and is an eight year project.
I am a long time member of Forest and Bird and am currently Secretary of the Eastern Bay Forest and Bird branch. We are also members of the Manawahe Kokako trust volunteer group involved in pest control and monitoring on John McIntosh’s land.
Having reduced my teaching down to part time I saw the MET role as being a great opportunity to get involved in a new project and am looking forward to getting involved with the Manawahe community.