Aotea students on the hunt for pesky pests
Porirua’s native bush is one step safer from pests thanks to a partnership between Aotea College and the Department of Conservation.
As part of the school’s citizen class, year 11 students chose an organisation to volunteer for.
A group of five students built trap boxes for the Department of Conservation and other Porirua conservation groups last Tuesday.
Aotea College student Rebecca Groom said it was rewarding to know the work would help the community.
‘‘It will help protect native birds and stop pests,’’ she said.
Department of Conservation partnerships ranger Charles Barrie said it was the first time students in Porirua had partnered with the department.
‘‘It is really going to make a big difference. We had the traps, but we didn’t have the boxes,’’ he said.
‘‘This is the first step in what could be an ongoing relationship with the school to support community groups and engage young people in conservation work.’’
Barrie said the project was not about firing up the students to kill things, but rather about the effect pests had on conservation land.
He said there were strict guidelines to how the traps were used and it was very humane.
The department provided the class with materials, the context and method to construct the trap boxes, which will be distributed to community groups working in the area.
Brave new world: John Hlawn Ching, left, and Danilo Rodriguez Royes took photos of their hopes and dreams.
Trapped: From left, Courtney West, Jaylee Kitching, Rebecca Groom, Keegan Smith and Miles Mavafua.