News Page for Friends of Le Roys Bush - latest news for 2018

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Recent news about Le Roys

Kauri Dieback hygiene certification (19 Oct 2019)

We now have two Le Roys Bush volunteers certified in kauri dieback hygiene procedures which means they know what to do to lay traps and do weeding in the areas around or uphill from kauri. If you'd like to get KD hygiene certification and a hygiene kit, please let us know.

Dogs on leash in Le Roys Bush (19 Oct 2019)

Many people have expressed their concern about the number of dog walkers who let their dogs off their leash once they enter the bush. I'm told they say they didn't know that Le Roys is an on-leash reserve. 

After a long wait, Council contractors installed "dogs on leash" signs at the open track entrances around Le Roys Bush today (19 October). 

And it's not just pets, people should also keep on track to avoid crushing fragile ecosystems and to reduce the risks of spreading kauri dieback - esp those kauri near or downhill from tracks.  

Little Shoal Bay issues - camping & flooding (19 Oct 2019)

The Birkenhead Residents Association has invited Le Roys Bush, Beyond the Fence and about 6 other local groups to review three issues in Little Shoal Bay:

(a) the draft Auckland Council By-law that proposes to designate the carpark between the tennis courts and the bowling club for freedom campers including non-self contained campers

(b) the Auckland Council reports looking at proposals to manage sea-water flooding around Dudding Park

(c) heavy traffic on the reserve road

Le Roys Bush has nominated members for the first two issues. If you'd like to be involved, please get in touch.

PFK AGM and Social evening 

The Pest Free Kaipatiki Restoration Society will be holding its AGM at 7.30pm on Monday 29 October in the NBYC clubhouse on Birkenhead Wharf. A brief AGM will be followed by time for member input on plans for the coming year. Then nibbles, drinks and social chat.  All interested people are welcome.
Le Roys Bush is an organisational member of PFK and there are currently two members of the PFK board who are involved in LRB and Beyond the Fence. 

Warning - track closures (12 Oct 2019)

In addition to the closure of the Le Roy Tce track to protect against the risk of kauri dieback, work on track renewals will start soon - possibly after Labour Weekend.  Watch this space. We regret the inconvenience, but some parts of the track are very tired - particularly the narrow bouncy board walk by the upper wetland has a number of weak and broken boards - it's recommended that people don't run on it.

This renewal work will mean that the track will be closed from the end of the new board walk down to the Valley Road/Glade Place track. 

We also hope that we can get the other tracks in Le Roys upgraded to reduce the risk to kauri - for example by the track from Valley Road and Seaview Ave down to Dudding Park. 

Regular working bees - we'd love to see you there

  • If you'd like to take part in any of these working bees, please email LeRoysBush@gmail.com and we'll include you on the reminder list.
  • Otherwise just ring Keith on 021-240-9414 to find out about them - newcomers whether experienced or willing to learn are most welcome
    • First Friday of each month - next event Friday 2 November. normal meeting place: 251 Hinemoa St entrance - but ring/email to check before hand
    • Fourth Sunday of each month - next event - 10am, Sunday 28 October-  different locations each month (ring/email to check location) 
    • Weekly on Monday mornings weed hit squads - different locations each week - suspended until the moth plant season restarts in summer 
    • Fortnightly on Tuesdays - 10am - (ring/email to check where and when)
    • Regular Beyond the Fence working bees around Le Roys are also held - see www.facebook.com/beyondthefencebirkenhead/
      • Please check with Keith to see if the working bee is on - phone 021-240-9414 or email LeRoysBush@gmail.com

      • KAURI DIEBACK PRECAUTIONS: to avoid the risk of spreading kauri dieback microspores, please 
        • scrub all dirt off your boots/shoes, clothes and gardening tools at home using hot water and detergent; 
        • tip the water down the sewer NOT down stormwater drains
        • use the sterigene to spray your footwear and tools when you arrive and when you leave
        • bag any dirty footwear or tools when you leave - take them home and repeat the cleaning as above

      • WHAT TO BRING & WEAR:
        • All welcome. Please wear good clean boots, gardening gloves, and long sleeved shirt and trou. 
        • Please bring clean folding saw, secateurs (for weeding), spade for sign installation or drain repairs AND for your personal comfort: water bottle, sun screen, hat. 
          • If tackling climbing asparagus, please bring small trowel or fork (or a gib board saw you don't mind using in the soil). 
      • HEALTH & SAFETY:
        • Note - to meet Health and Safety requirements - if you are not already registered as a Friend of Le Roys Bush, please contact the leader when you arrive.
                    In all circumstances, only undertake work you feel comfortable with.
        • You should be aware that all weed control work may include risks around slippery ground, wasps, sudden holes in the ground, sharp sticks and leaves.
        • Ensure that you are wearing suitable eyewear, footwear, gloves and clothing to protect against accidents. 
          If you are not an experienced gardener in rough and sloping conditions, you must ask the project leader for training and advice.
        • We follow the Pest Free Kaipatiki Health and Safety policy - all accidents, near misses and hazards must be reported using the PFK Accident, Incident and Near Miss Register form.
      • Contact Keith on 021-240-9414 for more details or if you can't find the group when you arrive on the day.  
      • We encourage you to also join Pest Free Kaipatiki Restoration Society - see the Pest Free Kaipatiki registration form

News for June to October 2018

BNZ Working Bee 5 October 2018 
of the wonderful work a team of 8 volunteers from the BNZ did around the Little Shoal Bay wetland with input also from Ted and Keith. The BNZ has been helping in the LSB wetland since 2009 - this photo shows the team from earlier years. 
Many thanks to Aaron, Andrew, Terry, Mark, Nalin, Andrew, George and Nick and to the BNZ for providing volunteer days for their staff. Sorry we can't load their photos here - we've run out of storage space!  See facebook.com/groups/FriendsOfLeRoysBush/ for one or two photos of this year's team.
The 8 volunteers this year followed up on last years work, releasing the kanuka, manuka and other natives planted on the fringes of the wetland. 
They also tackled pampas, ginger, moth plant, climbing aspagus, wattles, woolly nightshade and a grove of acmena. Fantastic work. Thanks also to the Northcote Bowling Club for their hospitality. 

Missing news! Can you help?
Unfortunately due to ill health our usual web page editor has not been able to record events regularly. If you'd like to help with this, please email us. 

Tuesday 19 June 2018 - Glade Place working bee 2.30pm 

Over the past two months, Sydney, Helen, Romily, Susana, Maureen, Keith and others have cleared nearly all the ginger from the Glade Place gully along with elaeagnus, privet, jasmine and many other weeds. 

Today we taped off a slip area beside the steps and reported it to Council.  The slip has occurred in the stream just below where the last gabion basket and rocks were placed many years ago to prevent major erosion in this gully.  

Local residents are requesting native plants and trees for the reserve land and some are buying them for their own property. If you own property here and would also like to plant to protect against erosion, please email LeRoysBush@gmail.com


Tuesday 5 June - weed control around Glade Place track
    • Helen did more work around the gabion baskets, Susana and Keith  cleared ginger and elaeagnus in the wetland west of the track and Laurie did more to improve the drainage leading to the bridge. 
Friday 1 June 2018 - Highbury / Senior Citizens area
    • Did weed clearance around the stream below the Kaimataara. Removed on big wattle, dealt to 30 queen of the night, 20 wattles and heaps of ginger and privet. Still more to do!

News for March - May 2018

  • Weekly Monday Morning Pest Plant Hit Squads 
Join a hit squad to tackle Moth Plant, WIld Ginger and other key weed sites in the "halo" around Le Roys Bush

Le Roys Bush and Beyond the Fence are planning to have weeding bees in Le Roys Bush and in  surrounding areas in BIrkenhead and Northcote.

The meeting point is determined on the day - so please email leroysbush@gmail.com or ring Keith on 021-240-9414 for the meeting point.

 

It's recommended you wear old clothes with long sleeves. Please also bring:

§  Gardening gloves

§  Suitable shoes/boots

§  Secateurs and/or folding saw. 

§  Small gardening fork (optional)

§  Water bottle, hat, sunscreen to suit the weather.

 

§  We can supply bottles of "MetGel" to dab on the stumps if you can't pull/dig the roots out.

§  If you don't have gloves, we can supply these - please let me know if you want some

It's important you let us know if you are coming so we can be sure we have enough supplies.

See the Health and Safety provisions as above.

Please note that you should always obtain permission before tackling problems on private property. Tackling weed trees over a certain size in public property is subject to conditions.


Please email LeRoysBush@gmail.com if you'd like to help with other weekly hit squad groups or if you'd like to tackle a few sites near your home.  

         
If you know of other sites please report them - follow the instructions on the Dirty Duo site.

Other news

Valley Road foot bridge removal and bush restoration

As at 29 May, Auckland Transport advise that their contractors have almost finished the replanting of the slope below where the foot bridge used to be - this photo shows the contractors completing the planting: Valley Road planting 2018-05-29 Two small totara at the bottom of the slope were accidentally ring-barked during the clearance - the contractors replaced these trees.

Kauri Dieback Cleaning Stations

Please use cleaning stations as you enter and leave. 
If you notice that bottles are getting low or have been vandalised, please email leroysbush@gmail.com and tell us which station(s) need attention.

Le Roys Bush Track Renewals 2018

The latest we have heard (24 May 2018) about the planned track renewals is that they are waiting to hear if the contractors can start soon. (Note:. Forest and Bird North Shore has generously written to the Kaipatiki Local Board recommending that most of the budget allocated to upgrading the Tuff Crater track should be reallocated for urgent work in those reserves most at risk from Kauri Dieback. How would Le Roys bush supporters and walkers feel about our 2018 budget being reallocated to those reserves with kauri roots growing under the tracks?)

Reports
  • Sunday 27 May 2018 - working bee on track at bottom of Glade Place steps
    • The track between the bottom of Glade Place and the bridge to Valley Road had become badly scoured by stormwater. The old drains had clogged up and the track had become the drain.  
    • Many thanks to Laurie for his work on the drains and track on Saturday.and for his advice for Andrew and Keith to follow up on Sunday.
    • The track is a bit muddy now but most of the ruts have been filled in and the drains have been cleared out. More work will be done during the week.  Please take care. 

  • Tuesday 22 May - more weed control in the Glade Place gully
    • A very successful working bee where Sydney finished the ginger in the gully, while Helen, Romily and Keith cleared weeds in and around the gabion baskets by the top of the steps. We dug out a large palm grass and pulled or pasted jasmine, privet, woolly nightshade etc.  There's lots of tradescantia here - but heaps of higher priority weeds to tackle.  We repacked the weeds left from the last BNZ working bee into one bag - then filled that bag.  The next working bee here will be on 5 June - see the News page for any updates.
  • Tuesday 8 May - Dirty Duo ginger control in the Glade Place gully
    • Great work done by Sydney and Susana - cut and pasted heaps of ginger in the gully between the bottom of Glade Place and 2 Learmonth Ave.

  • Sunday 22 April -  weeding bee - 10am Glade Place below corner of Learmonth Ave
    • Only two people showed up to take part in  Pest Free Kaipatiki Dirty Duo campaign to tackle ginger in the gully on the right hand side of Glade Place (as you walk down to the reserve entrance).
    • So we'll need to have another go at this - because it's not covered by the Wildlands contract. Please email leroysbush@gmail.com if you'd like to help.

  • Report on the working bee, Friday 6 April and other thanks for early April
    • Many thanks to Les and Keith who worked away at the Blue Morning Glory below the Aetherius Lodge and Rosella Apartments.
    • Many thanks also to David who tops up the kauri dieback stations weekly. He also cleared a fallen tree on 13 April after the storm.
  • Report on meeting with the Eco-Contractors for Le Roys Bush on 14 March 2018
  • A meeting with Wildlands, the eco-contractors for Le Roys Bush (including Little Shoal Bay and Lutners) and the Council eco-contracts coordinator decided to do a survey of the weeds in the wetland to identify what the additional costs would be of dealing to the invasive weeds that are not currently covered in the eco-contract (in the first year of a general wetland contract only honeysuckle is covered; in the second year, a few more weed species).  What we hope will happen is that the LSB and Lutners wetlands and surrounding bush will be reclassified as "high value" meaning that most of the prevalent weeds would be controlled. 
  • Report on working bees Thursday 8, Friday 9, Sunday 11 March 2018
New KD cleaning station installed at the bottom of Valley Road (but bottles available at the turnoff to upper Le Roys for those who forgot). All bottles topped up (thanks David).
More work on BMG, privet, moth plant, pampas grass, honeysuckle and jasmine in the area below the Birkenhead shops!   Thanks to all concerned.  
  • Report on working bee Friday 2 March 2018
    Blue Morning Glory is rampant below the Birkenhead Senior Citizens, Aetherius and Rosella Apartments. It's slow and painful work releasing the small trees we've planted over the last few years.  We'll do some more weeding tomorrow between 9 and noon. Come along to the Pest Free Kaipatiki Weed Control drop-in on Saturday 3 March between 9 and 11am then help us with some weeding afterwards. Thanks to Les, Geoff, Alex and Keith for a good morrning's work. By the way - sorry the start time was wrongly listed as 9am. I hope nobody turned up at that time and went away puzzled. 

News for January - February 2018

Click here for the Friends of Le Roys Bush Newsletter - 10 February 2018
  • Saturday 24 February  9 to 11am -  PFK Tool Shed at 251 Hinemoa Street - and following Saturdays
  • See https://www.pestfreekaipatiki.org.nz/events - Come and get the equipment you need to make your backyard or local reserve pest free.
    Come and help the team get traps assembled ready for new reserves and halos.
You can also come and find out how to get involved in the Dirty Duo Hit Squads targeting Moth Plant and Wild Ginger and test run using the app. 
  • Join the Pest Free Kaipatiki Predator Blitz and the "Dirty Duo" Weed Campaign - go to 
    pestfreekaipatiki.org.nz
    • We'd love you to with the PFK Weed Campaign supported by DoC and Auckland Council by 
      • reporting moth plant,  wild ginger and other key weeds on the new PFK Weed App or 
      • helping out with a volunteer weed hit squad, see the various events on the Dirty Duo blog
    • Help stop Kauri Dieback in Kaipatiki - can you help maintain the cleaning stations in Le Roys Bush?
    • The Auckland Council is sponsoring a Kauri Dieback programme in Kaipatiki to inform people about how to reduce the risks of Kauri Dieback spreading into our local bush reserves.  

    • The first ambassador activity started in Le Roys Bush at 7.30 on Saturday 13 January - with dozens of walkers and runners participating and sharing their thoughts and learning about the need to spray their footwear on entering AND leaving reserves and to keep themselves and their dogs on the tracks. Since then, the ambassadors have spoken to over 314 people and collected 179 surveys. Alex and Melissa, the two ambassadors, will be at tracks in Kaipatiki reserves on weekends and holidays over the coming 6 weeks. They will soon be handing out a new 2 page survey.
    • Most of the respondents say they would be very disappointed if tracks in Kaipatiki were closed and would like to help ensure that this doesn't happen.
    A special plea - the wonderful volunteer, Michael, who has been topping up our cleaning station since 2012, needs to reduce his workload.
    We are looking for 1 or 2 more volunteers - if you'd like to help, please email leroysbush@gmail.com
    • Report on working bee Wednesday 28 Feb 2018
    • More work clearing the water flow around the 3 track junction where the lack of catchment management since amalgamation has seen a major increase in siltation - blocking the stream and causing silt to overflow the walking track making it almost impassable after heavy rain.  Two of us also pulled out a dozen beggars ticks, dozens of Queen of the Night, a Woolly Nightshade and other weeds. Also cut and pasted an large pampas grass in the middle of the wetland - luckily it hadn't flowered yet. We'll need to have a weeding bee in there soon.  Laurie had done a great job of clearing the drainage to avoid track scouring and flooding. 
      Wonderful to see a group of Birkenhead Primary students undertaking "wai care" studies on stream cleanliness. With assistance from Brett and Edmund, they got to see some of the streamlife - an eel, some banded kokopu, some inanga, some flatwors and a variety of other streamlife. Only sad part was a grumpy man with a dog off leash who resorted to swearing when reminded that Le Roys is an on leash area. 
    • Report on working bee Sunday 25 February - meeting to discuss weed control programme for LSB wetland - 10am to noon - meet outside LSB Bowling Club.
      • This was a useful walk around the LSB and Lutners wetland.
      • An overall strategy was agreed to try to maximise the weed control within the available budget by negotiating with Council's contractor to deal with the really bad weeds (crack willow, pampas, etc) as well as the ones that are in their contract.
    • Report on meeting of Le Roys Bush Management Committee and LRB&LSB Charitable Trust - Friday 9 Feb 2018
      • Main points covered:
      • Support for PFK Kauri Dieback Taskforce to introduce measures to increase protection for kauri against dieback including cleaning of footwear, keeping to tracks (dogs and people), increased predator control, a controlled area notice to enforce hygiene protocols
      • Discussion of how the committee would like to see 
        • making all tracks dry (ie not subject to mud) while keeping the informal and natural look of the tracks
        • increased signage to make people aware of why and how they should protect kauri
    • Report on working bee Friday 2 February  -  251 Hinemoa Street - weeding below Aetherius, Senior Citizens and Rosella Apartments
    • Many thanks to Andrew, Helen, Ken, Les, Paul, and Keith for a sterling job on climbing asparagus and blue morning glory (and a few moth plant and wild ginger)
      The blue morning glory below the Senior Citizens is hopefully dealt to. The large area of climbing asparagus below Aetherius is now largely dealt to.  And the massive blanket of blue morning glory from below the Senior Citizens through to below Rosella Apartments is hopefully withering away. This patch below Rosella has been a long and hard battle over many years.  Friends of Le Roys planted about 30 natives there maybe 10 years ago - then contractors felled some privet trees without any regard to the plantings nor to the existing bush killing the natives and making access almost impossible. It took a year of sawing up the privet logs by hand as we weren't allowed to use a chainsaw and the contractors wouldn't undo their errors.  The terrain is full of rubbish pushed off the building site into the reserve and it's a weed paradise. Hopefully though the trees we've planted over the last three years will start to grow tall enough to survive the blue morning glory, convolvulous, thistles and many other weeds


    • Report on Regional Pest Management Plan meeting at Takapuna War Memorial Hall, 6.15 to 8pm on Thursday 15 February
      • Your feedback is vital to help ensure that we have more effective weed control regulations to protect our native bush 
      • If you want to get more done to the environment we need to ensure that everyone makes an individual submission on the LTP (Long Term Plan) and the RPMP (Regional Pest Management Plan) by 28 March
    • Other news
      • Auckland Council plans some track renewal work this year.  Watch this space for more information.
      • Ray Marshall was a stalwart of the Le Roys Bush Management Committee in the 1990s and 2000s.  His friends and family have donated money so that we can do something special in Le Roys in his memory.  If you knew Ray and have some suggestions, please get in touch.
      • The new Auckland Council eco-restoration contractors Wildlands Ltd have started doing some predator control in upper Le Roys Bush and they are planning their weed control in both upper and lower Le Roys.  Our volunteer working bees will aim to complement the work being done by Council contractors.
      • Salination of Dudding Park - watch this space for reports on possible responses to the tidal surges that are killing the raupo in the wetland and the grass on the cricket field.

    • Report on Sunday working bee 28 January 2018
      • Started clearing regrowth of blue morning glory around back of 251 Hinemoa Street - hopefully we'll see them die soon 












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