Frodo the morepork, a hive of bees, a tree-climbing demo and talks from young bio-diversity enthusiasts made for a great day out for 60 youngsters last month.
The occasion was the Pukemokemoke Youth Biodiversity Day, an event hosted by the Waikato Biodiversity Forum and held at the Pukemokemoke Bush Reserve, 20 minutes northeast of Hamilton.
Waikato University involvement
Staff and students from the University of Waikato’s School of Science were involved in the event which was tipped as the first ever youth-focused biodiversity event of its sort in the region. The focus for the day was promoting interest in local flora and fauna and inspiring students to pursue careers in conservation.
“The day was a great success. Students were really grateful for the opportunity to meet young people who are out there, saving our native species” says Catherine Kirby, University of Waikato Environmental Research Institute staff member and a member of the event steering committee.
Local students learn about biodiversity
Sixty students from Waikato University, local high schools and home school groups came along to hear from young people who work in biodiversity-related areas.
Catherine was joined by a committee of young volunteers, who spent six months making plans and encouraging local organisations to get involved.
“We had speakers from Kiwi Encounter, Wingspan, Plant and Food, Waikato Regional Council, Unmask Palm Oil and Waikato University, all of whom did a stellar job of exciting and inspiring the students”.