The Waiuku Estuary Restoration Trust (Mudlarks) held its annual meeting in Waiuku on Wednesday 7 June. A good attendance of members and public heard the chairman Ian Scobie give an account of the magnitude of the project to control mangroves in the Rangiwhea and Waiuku Rivers of the Manukau Harbour.
Ian, in his annual report, gave figures to illustrate the size of the undertaking:
“Since starting the project in 2010, the Mudlarks have removed close to 16 hectares of mangroves, which equates to 1600 tonnes. Each barge load of mangroves weighs six tonnes, so this equates to 266 barge loads.
“The group estimate their total accumulated input on the project, including time spent servicing equipment would amount to 25,000 hours.
“At the end of April, we had removed all the adult mangroves, with the exception of the retention area determined by Council in the Rangiwhea Estuary.
“We are currently working north from below Estuary Village, but will have to take a break from 1 September because of possible bird nesting and the project will resume 14 February 2018 to complete this area.”
Guest speaker at the annual meeting was Peter Thompson from Warkworth. Peter has been instrumental in completing many community projects in his town including dredging the river, restoration of the wharf, estuary planting, restoration of the Jane Gifford to name a few. Peter’s drive for his community was infectious and he encouraged those present to strive hard to achieve their goals for this community.
“Don’t wait for others to make it happen: make it happen yourselves,” he said.
The Mudlarks are eagerly recruiting new members who may be able to assist with the project to eradicate the menace of mangroves in the harbour. If you have spare time and are interested please give your details to the Waiuku Information Office.