(Published on 6th April 2017)
An interpretation panel was recently installed at the end of Gibbons Creek where it meets the Waikato River in Hamilton, marking the final phase of NZ Landcare Trust's 'Save NZ Fish' crowdfunding project.
The new information panel provides an outline of the physical changes that have been carried out within the creek around Memorial Drive and explains why these changes are important for our native fish.
NZ Landcare Trust used a 'crowdfunding' approach for the first time to generate interest in this work and to raise funds for 'Save NZ Fish'. The appeal successfully reached its goal, attracting NZ$3,517. A significant proportion came from NIWA, who became aware of the project thanks to the promotion around the crowdfunding initiative. The NIWA contribution was linked to funding they received from the Waikato River Authority.
The physical work required a small digger to position large rocks within the bed of the creek at several weirs to improve fish passage upstream. The larger rocks were supplemented by many smaller ones to create a more natural looking steam that contains plenty of fish friendly structure. The rocks were positioned by scientists from NIWA and Waikato Regional Council with volunteers from Hamilton Boys High helping with lifting and clearance.
Gibbons creek is home to native eels as well as both giant and banded kokopu, which are two of the five whitebait species found in New Zealand. It is anticipated that with more in-stream habitat, additional fish species such as inanga and smelt will choose to use the creek. Both the Waikato Regional Council and NIWA monitored the stream before the works started, and will continue monitoring now work is complete.
The interpretation panel was designed conjointly by NZ Landcare Trust, Hamilton City Council and Green Frog signage. We hope you find the information on the sign interesting and it helps to increase awareness of the amazing biodiversity, that with simple changes can be encouraged to live alongside us - even in heavily urbanised areas such as Hamilton.
For more information contact NZ Landcare Trust's Nardene Berry
- 07 859 3725
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