By Amy Brasch, Partnerships Ranger, Wellington.
Hundreds flocked to Wellington’s Waitangi Park last month for the first annual Pest-Fest. It was a great display of various conservation partnerships in the Wellington area coming together for a common cause—educating the public on pests in New Zealand.
The event included a range of activities for the public, such as weed swapping, animal pest trapping demonstrations, kids’ crafts, information on current conservation research, tracking tunnel tutorials, kiwi conservation tips, advice on how to design bird-friendly gardens and much more.
Despite being the first Pest-Fest ever held in Wellington, a wide range of organisations attended, including the Department of Conservation, Wellington City Council, Victoria University of Wellington, Zealandia, Forest and Bird, WWF and many others. It was a fantastic example of organisations coming together for conservation.
Pest-Fest was a fun way to learn about New Zealand pests. There were a lot of hands-on activities and demonstrations that really highlighted the teamwork between the various local agencies. The event ran alongside the Wellington Phoenix Community Day and the Farmer’s Market, which attracted a diverse audience.
It was great to see all the different organisations in one place complementing each other and it was great to be engaging with the community on such an important conservation issue and teaching people how to monitor pests in their own backyard.