Alternative Education visits the Manawahe Eco Centre

16/09/2015 13:11

AE from Tarawera High School

Visits the Manawahe Eco Centre

On Thursday 23rd July five students and two teachers from Alternative Education in Onepu came to visit the Manawahe Ecological Community Centre to learn about the natural environment of the forest and the threat of introduced predators to our native birds.

The day started with a demonstration of the various traps and tracking tunnels that we use to monitor and eradicate introduced predators.  A soft toy was thrown on one of the traps and the force of the slam that closed the trap was quite impressive. The students were well aware of the potential danger of working with these traps. The tracking tunnels were less intimidating and everyone was able to handle them and have a good look.  

Outside, we checked 5 tracking tunnels and 6 kill traps for predators. Three tunnels showed foot prints of rats and stoats, however, we did not catch a single pest. The students had to record the numbers in a table that contained the tracking and kill data for the entire year. After completing some basic statistics, this will count towards their NCEA level 1 numeracy credits.

We finished the morning with two quizzes about native birds and trees. The group impressed me with their knowledge about birds, but can use a bit of practise in naming native trees. I am looking forward to seeing the group again next Thursday to monitor 9 kill traps in the Karaponga reserve.

Liddy Bakker

Environmental Educator