During the last weeks of June, a band of enthusiastic Wairio Wetland members and other helpers were involved in more planting at the wetland.
The Wairio Wetland Restoration Committee met back in May and agreed the last two weeks of June would be planting time and Don Bell (GWRC) would be requested to check on Warren Field's (DOC schools Co-ordinator), availability was well as the GWRC BBQ team. Attendees were expected to be two local primary schools (Pirinoa & Kahutara), plus South Featherston and Martinborough, students from Taratahi Agricultural Training College, Rotarians, DU members & others (eg F & B members).
Jim submitted a claim for an agreed payment by Rotary for the costs of the signage at stage 1 ($450). Additionally he made a further application to rotary for the cost of weed mats ($2200). both were approved by Rotary.
Bridget Johnson, the Masters student from the School of Biological Science at Victoria University was onsite supervising the digger scraping of planting test plots.
The purchasing of trees and other materials has progressed with assistance from Don bell, Trevor Thompson (EQII) and Tony Silbery (DOC). Specialist and consistent tree planting skills are required to ensure the integrity of the research programme.
The budget for this years programme agreed at the previous meeting and additional costing data that became available as agreed is as follows:
- Earthmoving (scraping planting plots at stage 3 and lagoon site at stage 2) $2500 - Fencing (repairs to stage 1) $500
- Spot Spraying (stage 3 prior to planting) $2,000
- Weed mats (stage 3) $2,500
- Plants (stage 3) $5,000
- Noxious weed spraying (stage 3 prior to planting and maintenance at stage 1 and 2) $1,000
- Release spraying (stages 1, 2, and 3 in late spring 2011 and late summer 2012) $2,500
In Previous meetings it was agreed that a budget of $2500 should be ear-marked, subject to further fund-raising and commitment by DU for resources for additional plantings in two small fenced off areas north of stage 3. An audit of their suitability for additional planting by Don, Trevor and Tony would also be required and it was hoped this could be scheduled over the next few months.
Think Big Discussion
Based on feedback from recent visitors to the wetland (Farm Forestry and DU groups), as well as growing confidence within the Committee that significant progress is being made, the possibility ofa major planting to complete stages 1, 2 and 3 in the next few years was discussed.
There was agreement in principle to this approach and as a first step an estimate should be madeof the planting required in eash stage. It is also agreed that at the same time estimates be made of what areas not suitable for planting could be bulldozed to create significant lagoons. Financial costings would be then prepared as well as estimated manpower requirements to complete the work.