September 2023 Newsletter

September 2023 Newsletter

There were two volunteer trips during September involving 83 adult volunteers, 25 teenagers,  9 children and 19 Trust supervisors.
Correction - in the ferry advert I sent out earlier in September I incorrectly typed Simon's email for mid week trips. The correct email address for Simon is

Upcoming Volunteer Trips
Sundays - Contact Fiona on for details
1st October
29 October
26 November
Mid week trips - contact Simon on for details
Thursday 12th October
Friday 13th October
Friday 27th October
Friday 10th November
Friday 17th November
Tuesday 21 November
Thursday 7 December 

Wharf Reopens Yah!!!
The Motuihe wharf was closed on 13 February after sustaining damage due to cyclone Gabrielle. The HBC (Heritage Building Contractors) were on the island from the 7th of August. Their 3 main jobs were to repair the hole in the sea wall, repair the broken woodwork where the wharf joins the land and straighten the deck brackets where it joins the piles. This work has been completed and the wharf reopened on Monday 4Sept Bringing volunteers on to the island is now much, much easier and safer. A big thank you to DOC for getting this work done and to Emma Dunning the Motuihe ranger for accommodating the workers. 

A happy group of volunteers enjoy landing on the wharf.

The Red Boats ferry service resumes
The Red Boats will resume their Sunday fortnightly ferry service from Westhaven to Motuihe from 1st October. If there is sufficient support, we will use 3 of these ferries to run volunteer days. 
Sunday 1 October volunteer day
Sunday 15 October
Sunday 29 October volunteer day
Sunday 12 November
Sunday 26 November volunteer day
Sunday 10 December 
You must book ahead of your trip directly with The Red Boats Tickets are not sold on the ferry or the wharf. 
From 27th December to 22 January a daily service excluding 31 Dec to 2nd Jan
From 23 January every Saturday. and Sunday until Easter.
Adults $43 pp return ($44.74 with fees)
Seniors $35 pp return ($36.42 with fees)
Child 5-15 years $22 pp return ($22.89 with fees)
Volunteers $40 pp return ($41.62 with fees)
Book as an adult then apply the volunteer code which you will receive when you register as a volunteer. 

Trees That Count programme and our planting numbers
We have been sending our planting numbers off to Trees That Count since they began collecting data in 2016 and up until 2021 we contributed a total of 23,700 trees planted. However last year the programme stopped accepting planting numbers except for trees that they had supplied. Because we grow our own trees we can no longer contribute to the national total of native trees planted which seems a shame. This year our plantings that would have qualified for the Trees that Count programme were 1,560 trees including 30 different species. The top five were Cabbage, Wharangi, Puriri, Karaka and Kowhai. Our total plantings for this year were 1,911 which includes the flaxes and shrubs. This is an amazing total given the challenges we faced this year with no wharf, no ferry a cyclone and floods. A real tribute to our volunteers and leaders. 

Friday 15 September Dreamweaver trip
Strong SW winds and the odd rain squall didn’t bode well for this ‘double header’ with groups from Serko, Westpac and BNZ. So popular are these trips that Kirsty came to the rescue by running the Dreamweaver twice, with the timetable aided by the wharf being in action. 
The 8am sailing led by Phil and Dina was met by Lois, Colin and John who had arrived on the Doc Boat. Suffice to say no wharf would have led the skipper to cancel the day. Here’s Phil’s report:
The nursery had the luxury of no less than 15- 20 people at any one time and it was a clear demonstration of what large groups of willing volunteers, with a minimum amount of supervision, can achieve. Thank you to Dina, Lewis, Chris and Monica.
With all hands on deck the first half hour was spent sorting bags. Followed by 90 mins consolidating the plants in B block and the shade house. With the arrival of the volunteers from the second boat the pricking out began in earnest.
   400  puriri
   168 taraire
   237 karaka.        A total of 805
Meanwhile the real work (sic) was Lois track clearing from 5 ways back c100m, Colin weeding off the Calypso track and Simon in G6/G7 area, having arrived on the 10am Dreamweaver with reinforcements.  Yet again the value of boots on the ground was evident. About 40 volunteers swarmed through these dense bush areas pulling, cutting, lopping any number of woolies, the odd rhamnus and, of course, the occasional moth plant (30+ pods bagged). Weeding is a Sisyphean task so the more troops we have the better.
Everyone appeared to have a great time with the weather steadily improving through the day. The enthusiasm to contribute to the Project by so many in the community will keep us moving forward. Both sailings got back to pier Z safe and sound. 
Great day.
Simon Sheen/Phil Francis

Track clearing group led by Lois Badham

Wednesday 20 September The Red Boats trip
A splendid spring day with sunshine and light winds. 60 of us boarded The Red Boat which we hadn't seen at Motuihe for a long time. The two groups for the day were home schooled Duke of Ed students and Landlab. The home schooled group have been coming for a number of years and they were able to recognise areas planted by their siblings. Jill and Ian took a group clearing culverts on Tieke track and also clearing the track, Claire took a group out to clean the signs on Tieke Track, Lois took a group to clear the biodiversity stream track which is on the way to Snapper Bay. In the nursery 367 plants were pricked out. Pohutukawa that were suffering from myrtle rust were placed in strong plastic bags and the root balls were removed from the nursery area.  Lots of work done and everyone enjoyed themselves. After lunch a trip to the beach was enjoyed along with an ice cream from Denise in the kiosk, and Ian installed an additional smoke alarm in the wool shed. We all came off the island in high spirits.
Fiona Alexander/Phil Francis

Track clearing group led by Lois Badham

Nursery group supervised by Phil, Denise, Ann and Doris

Parents take a break. Photo Doris Evans