Project Janszoon gaining ecological footholds in Abel Tasman National Park


A female kaka is released into Abel Tasman National Park by Project Janszoon in November.           © Ruth Bollongino

By Helen Murdoch

To date it has seen thousands of  pests trapped, poisoned and monitored, kaka and kakariki returned, habitats and ecologies assessed, wildlife counted, forests planted, weeds removed and accolades won.

Project Janszoon director Devon McLean said he was excited by the gains.

“You can see it in the populations of birds and the work happening around the translocations and plans for the re-introduction of brown teal and  blue duck.”

Proposals were also afoot to release robin and it was hoped tuatara would one day recolonise Tonga Island.

He said the project’s education section was getting real traction. It has a student advisory board, made up of students from  its school’s Adopt a Section programme. Schools involved included Golden Bay and Motueka high schools and Motupipi School.

In addition groups like the tourism operators’ Abel Tasman Birdsong Trust, which was protecting and restoring bird populations through trapping and funding, and Golden Bay-based Project De Vine which was starting to build as volunteers began the huge task of tackling invasive weeds around the  park’s borders, were both vital to the project’s success.

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