Pipiroa-Te Wahapu Watersheds is a NEW project started in 2016 led by Living Waters in collaboration with Russell Landcare Trust, the BOI Walking and Walkways Trust and the FNDC.

Located on the Russell Peninsula of the BOI, both watersheds flow into the Veronica Channel between Opua and Paihia or Russell. 

The Okiato-Russell walkway runs through both watersheds and much of the project’s work is initially focused around disturbed areas near the walkway, which was constructed and continues to be maintained by the BOI Walkways and Walking Trust.
The 100 ha project area includes:
  Te Wahapu Scenic Reserve
  Te Wahapu watershedesplanade reserve/paper road;
  Pipiroa Scenic Reserve;
  Pipiroa Recreation Reserve; and
  Pipiroa access-way/legal road. 

The goal is to protect and restore the ecological naturalness and ecosystem sequences in these watersheds.

The sequence of ecosystems we are protecting and restoring is mature native hillslope forest (including kauri), valley floor floodplain forest (including kahikatea & pukatea) through freshwater wetland to saltmarsh and mangrove forest to sand-shell barrier spits to coastal soft sediment waters. 

Project Objectives:

• Restoring ecological naturalness to the full sequence of native terrestrial and aquatic ecosystems in the Pipiroa and Te Wahapu watersheds on the Russell Peninsula
• Improving the resilience of the native ecosystems to invasions from invasive alien species, landslides, windthrows, rising sea levels and climate change.
• Reducing risks to the native ecosystems from fire, concentrated stormwater, alien species and other threats. 
• Providing educational opportunities including interpretative panels along the Okiato-Russell walkway.

The first stage of the project (April-May2016) will take place along the Pipiroa access-way which forms the start of the Okiato-Russell Walkway where multiple invasive weed trees (primarily wattles) exist. These include woolly nightshade, Taiwan cherry, tree privet as well as non-woody/vine weed species such as pampas, banana passionfruit, Japanese honeysuckle and wild ginger. 

Living Waters would be pleased to hear from any volunteers and/or landowners within the area who may be interested in working with us to restore this beautiful area.

Contact: Vicky Froude via (vfroude "at" slingshot.co.nz)