For June, we’re celebrating a group of visionary pest-free heroes.
The Eastern Bays Songbird Project aims to turn Eastern Bays into a Pest Free Urban Sanctuary and place of safety and nurturing for native birds.
How? Eradicate mammalian predators and restore native ecosystems, so birds will have suitable good and habitat.
What’s notable about this project is the scope – their work spreading all over the East of Auckland, encompassing over 20,000 households and almost 14,000,000 square meters.
The project brings together experienced trappers and existing environment groups to combine power and make the biggest impact possible.
The movement kicked off in 2017 and the group has been busy. Their main focus has been working with the community; distributing traps and supporting people in how to use them, recording catches on a national database, bird counting, recruiting coordinators and volunteers, working with schools and developing activities to engage wider groups.
And they’ve certainly seen results and had some wins:
"We love hearing reports of how the numbers of native birds in peoples’ backyards have increased in response to increased trapping efforts by the community," says Project Manager Kerry Lukies.
You can get involved with Pest Free Auckland 2050 a community-led conservation programme facilitated by Auckland Council.
Or find a conservation group near you at Nature Space.
About the community
The groups combined together to make Eastern Bays Songbird Project are: Mission Bay Kohimarama Residents Associations MBKRA, Karaka Bay, Churchill Park and Tahuna Torea.
Ōrākei Local Board has been a long-term supporter of the project and is delighted at how it’s progressing.
Supporting and funding for the project also comes from: Auckland Council, Forest and Bird, Kiwibank, Ngāti Whātua Ōrākei, Predator Free NZ and a number of local businesses (UP Realty, Colorcity printers, Barfoot and Thompson).