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Kapiro and Rangitane becoming a thriving home for native birds and fish alike

A community in Kapiro north of Auckland have been steadily growing wildlife corridors along their local streams to support native birds and combat soil erosion. With help from Westpac and Trees That Count, they’ve had a successful planting season with 200 more trees in the ground.

The Kapiro and Rangitane stream starts in the hills near Somerville Road outside of Auckland, and Rangitane flows all the way out to the northern side of Kerikeri inlet. It runs through small pockets of wetland but is otherwise channelled through wide open areas.

Over a decade ago, locals first noticed a problem with soil erosion, with large amounts of soil sediment being deposited into Rangitane stream from the crumbling banks of an open stormwater channel. The reserve was also a source of many weeds, spreading tall gorse, tobacco weed, blackberries and other weeds to the stream banks and surrounding areas.

Rare native birds including weweia/New Zealand grebe, mioweka/banded rail, pūweto/spotless crake and brown kiwi live in the pockets of vegetation along the waterways, so locals set about creating a plan to plant native trees in order to help repair the soil erosion and link patches of bush together, creating wildlife corridors for native birds.

Because the area is warm and rains often, local volunteers are able to plant all year round. They’re often helped out by students from Pakiri School and local landowners, which means the community have been able to plant over 7,000 in the past 11 years.

This planting season, Trees That Count matched the project with 200 native trees funded into our marketplace by Westpac and a special community planting day was held to get them in the ground.

The community has no plans to slow down, with plans to expand their planting to specifically address water quality and support whitebait to thrive in the streams.