In the run up to Matuku Link's third anniversary on 2 November, we're revisiting their story and celebrating their good work.
Back in November 2016, a team of trustees from the Matuku Reserve Trust purchased the 37 hectares of land off Bethels Road that make up Matuku Link and the team have been hard at work ever since.
The land itself borders a few areas currently subject to ecological restoration, including Ark in the Park and Habitat Te Henga, as well as Auckland's largest wetland, the Te Henga wetland.
"We've had pāteke (brown teal) return to that area since we started our work, so to see these rare birds are now enjoying their habitat is really great,” says Matuku Reserve Trust secretary Annalily Van Den Broeke “It proves the importance of our work.”
That work includes predator control, the plugging of drains and planting more than 1500 trees, shrubs and grasses.
Volunteers have put in more than 4000 hours of work towards restoring the area. "We have a working bee on the third Sunday of every month, but we also put in the work during the week," Annalily explains.
On the Matuku Link land, there are a number of endangered species - including the area's namesake, the matuku or Australasian bittern. You'll also see kereru, ruru, and if you walk along the nearby river, you might spy a native bat.