September 2021

Kevin Reports: Recent heavy rain events seem to have caused sheetwash to knock down and remove understorey plants on some steeper areas, so with Will we have we have planted multitudes of small Rengarenga. We have also planted In gaps with Coprosma and Manuka around on Grassy Saddle, and I have put more tussocks (Red, Blue, Curled) and Haloragus around the edge of Table Flat. With Will we have shifted a roll of netting fence up from the creek and placed it where dogs (and people) have been cutting corners and damaging plants.

Will Reports: A Welcome to John & Jeana who have joined the gully group. They have already been active with some plant releasing and going around or over, our earlier plantings removing old sleeves. We will soon have a good bundle of old sleeves to deposit in the TDC rubbish at Rabbit Island!

The last couple of years we have been pushing with the plantings up to Grassy Saddle to cover all the available ground and then, while they are growing, we go back later to attend to old sleeves, releasing and such. We have our area mostly planted with the quicker growing and just have replacements to do. And as Kevin mentions, we have been ‘infill’ planting with the forest species and understory plants. We hope these will stem some of the rain water runoff, help with erosion and increase the insect life, etc. Some netting has been stretched along the track in places to protect our plantings.

Since the TDC pines have been removed, we have noticed a large increase in the stormwater run off in the forest. The virus that has devastated the kawakawa hasn’t helped at all either but it appears that the kawakawa are recovering slowly. There are patches of young coming up so here’s hoping that they have developed some immunity from the virus.

Some netting has been stretched along the track in places to protect our plantings.

Bryan Riley Reports:
Hi Will, Wilks line – 1 Weasel 3 mice, plus I hedgehog.
Waterfall line – 2 mice.
Not a great deal of bird life in the area. Have not seen any weka for some time. I did see a tui in a kowhai tree that you or Kevin had planted near Lone Fern Corner.

Bruce Harvey Reports: Hi Will, Another quiet month for trapping on Grassy. Just 2 mice and 1 rat were dealt to.
Cheers Bruce

Mike Oliver Reports:
Mike’s Gully Lines: 2 mice, 3 rats.
On the Fire Lookout Lines: 1 possum.

Alastair Mackintosh Reports: Hi Will. Nothing to report from this past month. Traps all set but no nasties. Plenty of Quail about with at least two couples nesting within 50m of the house. Feed them as usual and waiting to see the young hatch. Stopped the bird feeder as do not want the Tui & bellbirds to become dependant. A few Kereru around but seem to be fewer than in the past. Though this could be in function of food available. Pheasants around, hear and see them most days. They, as are all other birds here fairly tame. They know they will not be harmed. All for now, Regards, Alastair.

This months total Gully Catches: 9 mice; 4 rats, 1 weasel, 1 hedgehog.

Thanks to all the Gully Volunteer team:
plus thanks to;
TDC; Ewing’s Poultry; & Sarah & Rick Griffin.
And of course Pic’s Really Good Peanut Butter!

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