Seaweek 2019 kicks off on Saturday 2 March. With some 200 events, including more than 50 in Auckland, 40 in Wellington and 30 in Hawkes Bay, plus 6 competitions, there is plenty on offer. So dive in, visit the website at at seaweek.org.nz and check out the events near you!
National Coordinator Dr Mels Barton is delighted at the response to this year’s Seaweek:
“We are getting more groups organising events every year, and many more repeating events year after year. It’s great to have so many opportunities around the country for families to learn about the amazing marine environment we have in New Zealand and how to protect it.”
Voting for the 2019 Senior Seaweek Ocean Champion closes on Friday 1 March and the competition is intense. The winner of the award, sponsored by the New Zealand Coastal Society, will be announced at the Bill Ballantine Memorial Lecture: Changing Ecology in a Changing Ocean on Thursday 7 March at the University of Auckland.
Cawthron Institute and Sustainable Seas Science Challenge scientist Heni Unwin will be on tour around the country during Seaweek, telling communities about her marine plastic tracker model at a number of interactive events.
Other event highlights around the country include:
Northland: Snorkel Days at Reotahi and Pataua; clean-ups at Ngururu and Matapouri; Great Big Micro Mollusc Hunt; Guided Kayaking at Waikaraka; talk on sharks in Whangarei; interactive art at the Quarry Arts Centre in Whangarei; quiz night at the Butter Factory in Whangarei.
Auckland: Bill Ballantine Memorial Lecture and Ocean Champion award night at the University of Auckland; Manukau Harbour Clean-up and sand sculpture competition (win a kayak!); snorkel days at Mokohinau, Goat Island and Rotoroa Island; Onehunga Festival; estuary, coastal and wetland guided walks, Ocean Oasis film extravaganza at Lopdell House; grey faced petrel (at Arataki) and saving the takahe (on Rotoroa Island) talks; plastic tracking talk from Sustainable Seas scientist Heni Unwin at the Maritime Museum; kayak tours at Okura; glass bottom boat tours at Goat Island; rockpool tour and water sport activities at Sir Peter Blake’s MERC; sailing on Steinlager 2; Westhaven Marina open day and numerous clean-ups at Mission Bay, Eastern Beach, Shakespear, Maraetai and Waiheke Island. Schools can learn all about stormwater with the Tread Lightly Drain Game at SEA LIFE Kelly Tarlton’s all week.
Waikato: Inner Harbour beach clean; Marine Matters Science Night; Seaweek special at Waikato River (including a clean-up) and Maui Dolphin Day and Recycled Raft Race.
Bay of Plenty: Soft shore and rocky shore explorations; underwater clean-up at Pilot Bay; do’s and don’ts of marine mammal interactions talk in Tauranga; Motiti protection evening; Seaweek awareness evening including the film Fish People and discussion in Tauranga; coastal clean-up and bioblitz; learn to snorkel and marine survey at Mt Maunganui.
Tairawhiti / Gisborne / East Coast: Community Snorkel Day at Te Tapuwae o Rongokaka Marine Reserve on 3 March.
Hawkes Bay: Royal Society Lecture by Heni Unwin; clean-ups at Whakamahia, Haumoana beach, Wairoa riverside, Waitangi Regional Park and with Cathedral Peace and Justice, Our Seas Our Future and Catholic Parish of Napier; guided walks of estuaries, regional parks and Napier’s murals; interactive art at Creative Arts Napier; decorate a godwit or a calico bag; Albatross documentary film night; talk with George Nuku about his art and the ocean; learn biofacts at libraries.
Taranaki: Clean-up at East End Beach, New Plymouth; Snorkel Day at Ngamotu beach; Hawera pool snorkel trail; Project Hotspot interactive workshop on threatened coastal species.
Manawatu / Whanganui: Pre-school Variety Concert; clean-up at South Beach; a music jam at Levin; a community display; sand sculpture events at Waitarere and Castlecliff; Children’s Day at Levin.
Wellington: Whitireia snorkel days; interactive art at the performance arcade on the waterfront; talks about saving turtles, freshwater with Mike Joy, whales with Project Jonah and plastics with Heni Unwin; upcycling art workshops at Wellington Museum and beeswax wraps at the Sustainability Trust; Plastic Oceans film with Forest & Bird Youth; Victoria University Coastal Ecology Lab open day; creative activities at Te Pātukituki in Masterton; Waterbourne extreme watersports; clean-up at Eastbourne; paddle boarding at Lyall Bay; youth photograhy workshop at Pauatahanui Forest & Bird Reserve; teacher workshop to explore the Porirua shore and critter ID at Tauputeranga; Beach play at Petone; heaps of educational and fun storytime and movie events for children and adults at Hutt City Libraries.
Nelson: Cable Bay Snorkel Day on 2 March; Mr Science’s Science of the Seas show at Theatre Royal Nelson on 8 March.
Marlborough: Massive Marlborough Clean-up with stations at Picton and Rarangi Beach; Kids Snorkeling at Waikawa Dive; fish feed and snorkel in the Marlborugh Sounds; discover the glowing ocean; Mr Science’s Science of the Seas show; snorkel scavenger hunt; snorkel Long Island; visit Anakiwa Beach.
Canterbury: Akaroa Dolphins Educational Cruise; Farewell the Godwits; talks about what’s in a teaspoon of seawater, Hectors dolphin research, poetry and peril on Banks Peninsula, Sea Shepherd, the Auckland Islands; children’s art and poetry workshops; a pub quiz; Lyttleton cruise with Black Cat Cruises and the NZ Whale & Dolphin Trust; twilight beach walk, wetland detective walk; clean-ups of Christchurch beach, South Brighton estuary, Birdlings Flat and a driftwood sculpture competition.
Otago: Dunedin Coastal Clean-up on Saturday 2 March.
Plus there’s a national virtual fieldtrip running throughout Seaweek from LEARNZ and the Sustainable Seas Science Challenge, which is perfect for schools to hook into.
There are also 6 exciting and fun competitions to enter this year with amazing prizes on offer, including a kayak, NZ seashore books, a sustainable seafood BBQ and gear from Wettie. For full details of all the events and competitions check out the Seaweek website at seaweek.org.nz.
The theme for this year’s Seaweek, which runs from Saturday 2 to Sunday 10 March 2019, is “Tiakina o Tātou Mōana – Care for our Seas”.
Seaweek is an annual marine education and engagement week coordinated by the New Zealand Association for Environmental Education (NZAEE). Seaweek 2019 is supported by Foundation North, Department of Conservation, Fisheries New Zealand, New Zealand Marine Studies Centre (Otago University), Environment Canterbury Regional Council, Greater Wellington Regional Council, The National Aquarium – Napier City Council, Kiwi North, Wild for Taranaki, New Zealand Coastal Society, Young Ocean Explorers, Experiencing Marine Reserves, Tasman Bay Guardians, Manukau Beautification Charitable Trust, Auckland Whale & Dolphin Safari, Outboard Boating Club, Canoe and Kayak, Fish4all, Harper Collins Publishers and many local sponsors.
Photo: EMR – Darryl Torkler.