Local Govt | National News Video | Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Search


Students learn from bat man

Hamilton’s bat population has some new advocates, after a group of primary school students vowed to protect them.

Students from St. Peter Chanel School took a tour of Hamilton Gardens last week with local bat advocate Gerry Kelly. The visit marked the end of a term-long project learning about endangered pekapeka-tou-roa/long-tailed bats.

Mr Kelly is part of Hamilton City Council’s parks team and has a passion for protecting Hamilton’s long-tailed bat population which make their home in many of the city’s gullies and parks.

“We’re lucky enough to have a bat population in the city and we must do all we can to help protect it," he says. "As well as looking after their natural environment, we can also build and install artificial bat roosts to give them another opportunity to rest. These houses are experimental in New Zealand and are showing good results in Hamilton, with some bats using them.”

Mr Kelly works alongside various community organisations, including Project Echo, to build bat boxes, monitor bat movements and educate the community about the elusive creatures.

Nine-year-old Kate was the driving force behind the visit after hearing some of the bat boxes would be at the recent Your Neighbourhood event at Minogue Park.

“I went to talk to Gerry at the park the other weekend and he showed us how to make bat boxes and how bats use them to sleep. We asked him to come and talk to our class and luckily, he said “yes”. It’s really cool that we can find out where the bats live too!”

Growth Programmes Manager Karen Saunders was also on hand to talk to the students about how the Council is making sure bats are looked after in the new Peacocke neighbourhood, south-west of the city.

“Hamilton is one of the only urban environments in the country where long-tailed bats live. That’s really special.

“Through the Peacocke programme, we’re making Hamilton’s biggest-ever environmental investment in a new growth area. A big part of this work is research into local bat populations and behaviour, which has already added new information to help us better understand our native pekapeka,” she says.

“We want to create a community that also enhances the population of native bats. It’s great to see our kids taking an interest in this work.”

Waikato Museum runs popular bat tours several times a year.

For more information and to find out about the next tour, visit waikatomuseum.co.nz

To find out more about the Council’s environmental work in Peacocke, visit hamilton.govt.nz/peacocke

© Scoop Media

Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

General Election Announced: Set For September 19

The 2020 General Election will be held on Saturday 19 September, Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern announced today. “I will be asking New Zealanders to continue to support my leadership and the current direction of the Government, which is grounded in stability, a strong economy and progress on the long term challenges facing New Zealand,” Jacinda Ardern said. “We are running an established and effective MMP Government, and overseeing a strong economy with low unemployment and growth rates the envy of other countries like Australia and the UK while making critical investments in health, education and reducing child poverty. More>>


Gordon Campbell: On The Coronavirus Outbreak

The coronavirus – its official World Health Organisation designation is 2019-nCoV – is believed to have originated as a seafood-to-human transfer, with ground zero for the transfer believed to have been a fish market in Wuhan, China. More>>


WINZ Quarterly Report: More People Getting Into Work

The December quarter benefit numbers released today show the Government’s plan to get people off the benefit and into work is starting to pay off,” Social Development Minister Carmel Sepuloni said. More>>


Changing lives: Boost In Whānau Ora Funding

Whānau throughout New Zealand are set to benefit from an extra three million dollars that will go directly to Whānau Ora Commissioning Agencies, the Minister for Whānau Ora Peeni Henare announced today. More>>


PGF Kaikōura $10.88M: Boost In Tourism & Business

The Provincial Growth Fund (PGF) is investing $10.88 million to boost business and tourism opportunities in Kaikōura, Parliamentary Undersecretary for Regional Economic Development, Fletcher Tabuteau announced today. More>>


Whitebaiting: Govt Plans To Protect Announced

With several native whitebait species in decline the Minister of Conservation Eugenie Sage has today released proposals to standardise and improve management of whitebait across New Zealand. More>>


Education: Resource For Schools On Climate Change

New resource for schools to increase awareness and understanding of climate change... More>>






InfoPages News Channels