Mad about bats? We need you in 2022!
What: 2-Day Bat Conservation Workshop
When: 26 & 27 February 2022
Read more on their flyer HERE
For details on the Pekapeka and project information read the whole story HERE
The pekapeka tou roa, or long tailed bat is one of only two endemic land mammals in Aotearoa, with the other being the short-tailed bat. Tamaki Makaurau is home to pekapeka tou roa populations in Te Wao nui a Tiriwa, Hunua Ranges, Pukekohe, Riverhead Forest and some other fragmented areas. Overall little is known about their exact spread, population size, and population health.
The pekapeka roosts in large old trees, both native and exotic. Our bats are under constant threat from animal pests and habitat loss through urban development, including the removal of their roosting trees. Due to their size, speed, and nocturnal behavior bats are hard to monitor. There is so much we don’t know about them! The one thing we know for sure is that their conservation status is at CRITICAL. This means we could lose them. We need help.
Monitoring for bats is largely undertaken by consultants, whose time is expensive and monitoring is often carried out in response to specifics around resource consent applications. In some instances, bats are often just an afterthought in the development process and discovered at work sites only after consents have been granted and works have begun. We need to pre-empt this “ambulance at the bottom of the cliff approach” and get into possible bat habitats to assess them well before development comes knocking.
With the right support, training and equipment, effective pekapeka monitoring can be carried out by local volunteers. Through investigating likely habitat, this monitoring could identify new populations and habitats being utilised by pekapeka, and inform future planning and developments around mitigation for protecting pekapeka and the habitats they utilise.
Our project: Pekapeka in the North West
In 2021, Community Waitakere and Kaipātiki Project were successful in gaining RENH funding from Auckland Council to undertake bat surveys and monitoring studies in Auckland’s North West. We will provide training, support and equipment to volunteers from the North West of Auckland to monitor for pekapeka. Our target areas include Paremoremo, Greenhithe, Riverhead, Coatesville, Whenuapai, Albany and the Kaipatiki Local Board area.
Through this project, we aim to establish new long term monitoring sites that will help us to better understand pekapeka and our newly recruited Batpeople will collect robust data that can be shared with lead agencies like the Department of Conservation and Auckland Council.
Community Waitakere and Kaipātiki Project aim to include Mana/Tangata Whenua groups in the design, set up and delivery of the training and monitoring components of the program. Education and information will also be provided to local community groups, residents and landowners around the presence of pekapeka and how to protect them. There will also be opportunities to use handheld bat monitors and attend evening bat walks.
We will be running a 2-Day Bat Conservation Workshop on 26 & 27 February 2022.
If you think you have what it takes to be one of our Batpeople and would be available for our two day training workshop on February 26 and 27, 2022, please visit kaipatiki.org.nz/whats-on and register.
There are a limited spaces on this course so get in quick!!