Waiatarua Reserve

Protection Society

Waiatarua Reserve

Waiatarua Reserve – A unique haven in the midst of the city for people and birds.

We are a community group working towards making the Waiatarua Reserve a unique ecological jewel for residents and for future generations by;

  • Planting native trees and shrubs to provide year round food for birds and insects
  • Carrying out a volunteer pest control program with Auckland City Council Parks to control rats and possums which decimate the birdlife and new tree growth.

The Reserve is a great place to come walking the dog, running, playing with the family and we also want to make it a place where forest and wetland birds, butterflies and insects can live and flourish.

We welcome new members. If you would like to contact us and / or to join in on any community plantings or the volunteer pest control program, please click on the box below.

Wood PigeonMonarch Butterfly

We hope that Native Wood Pigeon Kereru and Red Admiral Kahukura could be seen in the midst of our city.

Our Vision

Our vision is to create an ecological jewel in the midst of the City:

  • A wetland and forest habitat that provides year round food for native birds and insects.
  • A place where residents can come and jog, walk the dog, play, reflect.
  • A Reserve where children can learn about our native plants, birds and insects.

What is the best that this reserve could be?

A long term plan needs to be developed for the Reserve which takes into account all aspects - ecological, wildlife and plants, park users and recreation, and storm water treatment. A holistic plan would include actions that can be worked towards as time and funding permit over the coming years. When this plan is formulated, both Council and external funding can be applied for and Community support can be rallied to carry out some of the work.

wetland birds

Ecological Jewel

The reserve covers a large area and can make a significant ecological impact on Auckland city contribution to the environment, and provide a unique jewel for our residents and for future generations. It can be a habitat for wildlife and native trees and plants. It can be part of a city wide green belt, form part of the migration path for birds, and be a breeding area for native species which can spread out into the city. We would like an ecological plan to be professionally developed for the Reserve which looks holistically at all aspects including the following:

What birds can this reserve support and nurture?
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What habitats are required for each of these species?
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What insects can the reserve support?
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What other species can the reserve support?
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What freshwater fish could survive in the wetland?
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What can be done to improve the existing planting areas?
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What maintenance could be carried out to assit existing plants?
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What pest control is needed?
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What are the recreation and educational usage of the parks?
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Planting Program

Members of our group have been involved for many years in various planting programs in the Reserve. Although these programs have included native trees, many species planted have been initial protection plants such as rapidly growing Manuka, and there is a need for additional tree planting of diverse trees that will provide year round food for birds and insects. We are particularly keen to attract Kereru the native wood pigeons, and have been planting Puriri which are a favourite food source of the Kereru.

We have undertaken tree plantings of over 2000 trees and shrubs since 2007 specifically targeting year round food supplies for birds. Species included kowhai, nikau, miro, puriri, fuschia, tawa, rata and many others. Our thanks go to the Auckland City Council and the Auckland Regional Council Environmental Initiative Fund for providing the funding for the trees.

We would like to see a comprehensive overall planting program formulated and undertaken in Auckland parks and reserve to provide a green corridor for native birds. For instance, the Stonefields development of the nearby former Winstone’s Quarry provides an opportunity for the landscaping to include food supply plants and shrubs for birds.

We will continue the planting program in the winter of 2011. It is a daunting task looking at 500 trees that are to be planted but when 25 to 30 people turn up its normally finished in two hours. If you are interested in helping with our planting program please 

Pest Control

The Reserve is in the midst of an urban environment and, as in all cities, rats are plentiful. One of the most beneficial tasks that we can do for the native birds is pest control. Our community group is carrying out a volunteer pest control program with Auckland City Council Parks to control rats and possums which decimate the birdlife and new tree growth. As well as rats and possums eating the eggs and plant food supply of birds they also scour the forest floor and eat insects which are part also part of the birds supply of food. Our thanks to the Auckland City Council for providing assistance for this program and to the Eastern Bays Community Board for providing funding for this program.


Pest Control program volunteers wanted

We are looking for volunteers to help with this program. Typically volunteers spend 1 to 2 hours a month helping to:

  • Check and bait traps
  • Record possum and rat catches
  • Monitor animal pest numbers

This is a worthwhile way to contribute to the environment and our community. No experience is needed and training and equipment is provided. Pest control programs in other areas have had huge success. We have been told of programs where after a year large increases in birds have been recorded. After about a year the insect population recovers from the rat decimation, and the birds flourish. We are inspired by tales of flocks of 10 or more fantails in other areas where pest control has been carried out. If you would like further information or to take part in the program please .