Keen Kiwi kids crazy on conservation
Our children are the next generation of nature conservers, and members of the Kiwi Conservation Club (KCC) are ready and raring to go.
KCC, the junior section of Forest & Bird, is for children from 3 to 13 years old.
The club aims to foster curiosity, discovery and exploration by mixing fun with a dollop of science. Its monthly events give children and their families the opportunity to explore wild nature and wild places together.
For this, KCC sponsors various events and outings throughout the year.
Last autumn, led by mycologist Barbara Paulus, KCC took 30 children and their families fungi hunting at Totara Reserve.
After a briefing on where fungi like to live, and armed with a simple checklist detailing the different types of fungi, the group walked along the campground tracks checking off those they found.
It was surprising just how many fungi were in the locality.
Some KCC events take place after school, such as the special opportunity last year to visit the Wildbase Hospital at Massey University.
During the visit, wildlife technician Pauline Nijman talked to the children about the work the team does and introduced them to some of the hospital’s residents.
The children were lucky enough to see a Kiwi receive medication and meet a tuatara upclose.
Coming up in 2017, the diverse range of KCC events includes a trip to Kapiti Island; an overnight tramp to the Tararua Forest Park; exploring freshwater invertebrates at a local stream, and a visit to a dairy farm to learn what farmers are doing to help improve water quality.
It can be difficult for families to get out into the bush.
Obstacles may include not knowing where to start or where to go, a lack of bushcraft skills and knowledge, or simply being too busy to organise an outing.
Enrolling children or grandchildren as KCC members removes all these kind of hassles, and most KCC events are free.
To find out more, contact firstname.lastname@example.org or go to the KCC website
Kiwi Conservation Club members on a fungi hunting expedition at Totara Reserve.