It’s been two years since we fenced off and started planting the stream and remnant wetland on our farm to native species, with 2,000 plants in the ground thanks largely to Horizons Regional Council, our farm interns, and local schools.
Before fencing and planting the stream was in rough shape. Our stock was grazing up to the water line and putting pressure on the banks.
This is a photo of the day after the 2015 floods showing the culvert just below a bend in Purua Stream. The water overtopped the culvert by almost half a metre.
This is a photo of the same area this month. Note the two large willow trees in each photo.
We have dedicated this area, which is used for outdoor education with children, to Dr. Chris Cresswell who helped plant trees here two years ago. We call the area “Chris Cressant” because of the bend in the stream.
This week we found a giant kokopu living in the pool underneath the culvert.
In June we found an eel just upstream of the culvert, which appears to indicate that the concrete rubble ‘fish ladder’ we built has been effective at allowing aquatic species to get through the formerly ‘perched culvert’ and upstream to the restored wetland.
Horizons is back again arranging more school plantings along Purua Stream on our farm and hopefully other land owners will do the same. What a difference it will make for everyone living downstream, which includes much of the Whanganui community.
To get your school involved contact Horizons Regional Council or contact us at Kaitiaki Farm, www.theecoschool.net