In pre-human times the streams flowing into Porirua Harbour meandered through extensive swampy marshlands. These rich ecosystems helped maintain the diversity of life in the harbour. Today few original swamps remain but volunteers have successfully recreated a varied marshland, the Pauatahanui Reserve, in the eastern corner of the Harbour.

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How was Pauatahanui formed?

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What unique plants are found in the reserve?

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What is the vision for the Reserve?

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What are the most common plants in the reserve?

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How are Pied Stilts encouraged to nest in the Reserve?

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January

Recreation

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February

Fishing

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March

Shags

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April

Pollution

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May

Tides

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June

Urban Catchment

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July

Pauatahanui Reserve

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August

Sediment

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September

Creatures Great & Small

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October

The Rural Catchment

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November

Industrial Catchment

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December

The Future

Episode information

What is a ‘Salt Marsh’?

A salt marsh, also known as a coastal salt marsh or a tidal marsh, is a coastal ecosystem in the intertidal zone between land and open salt water or brackish water that is regularly flooded by the tides. It is dominated by dense stands of salt tolerant plants such as herbs, grasses or low shrubs. These plants are terrestrial in origin and are essential to the stability of the salt marsh trapping and binding sediments.

How can I find out more about the food chain of the inlet?

 

The GOPI website has a good discussion at http://www.gopi.org.nz/salt-marsh
 
Te Ara – the Encyclopedia of New Zealand has a good discussion of estuarine food
 
The Department of Conservation website points to importance of “the walnut-sized mud snail, Amphibola crenata hold a critical place in the wetland food web. As they chew on the organic material that forms their food, they stimulate the growth of bacteria that return nutrients into the water.”
Where can I learn more about Salt Marsh plant identification?
What is the background to the Pauatahanui Inlet Reserve?

 

This website has a history of the first 25 years of the reserve http://www.naturespace.org.nz/documents/pauatahanui-reserve-history