I got upstaged by an eight year-old during Conservation Week and I’m stoked! The best ambassadors are often children and all the better for being local.
I was at the Maketu community information evening to give a presentation about the threatened NZ dotterel, but after Maketu school student Jayda Walters gave her presentation and her peers displayed their posters about protecting dotterel, there was little more I could tell the audience of approximately 20 locals.
The newly formed Maketu Ongatoro Wetlands group (MOW), arranged the evening to let locals know about their pest control and dotterel protection work on the Maketu spit, and to enlist their help.
The group also ran a poster competition for Maketu School that encouraged the students to learn about the threats to NZ dotterel and produce posters to educate the community about what they can do to help. It clearly worked because the students are now dotterel experts and hopefully will spread the word amongst their whanau.