A big thanks to the Taieri Blokes Shed

 Nick and Bill with the stoat traps they made

Nick and Bill with the stoat traps they made

The Taieri Blokes Shed have kindly made another load of stoat trap boxes for us.  At the end of 2015 they made 20 typical style DOC 200 box traps.  This year, and with a new design that has come from Zero Invasive Predators (ZIP), Nick and Bill are back to making more trap boxes for us. The new design conceals the DOC 200 traps from the cunning stoat, is easy to replace bait but secure against small inquisitive fingers and animals that we don't want to catch.  Soon they'll be deployed throughout the Inner Halo area - wahoo!

'How Safe is My Cat?' - Summary of Results

Welcome to 2017.  

For those of you who missed the 'How Safe is My Cat?' hui at Orokonui Ecosanctuary before christmas, or if you are a cat owner, or simply curious about the behaviour of domestic cats, this will be of interest to you.  

We made a summary pamphlet which summarises the results of the 'How safe is my cat?' project.  It covers three main topics:

  1. How safe cats are around traps that are being used in the Halo project;
  2. What other mammals are interested in these same traps;
  3. Whether our pet cats are a risk to the birds that leave Orokonui Ecosanctuary.

We have uploaded the pamphlet to our "Resources" page, under Halo Project, or click here to read

'How Safe is my Cat?' Results Hui Invitation

Would you like to find out the results of the Landscape Connection Trust's 'How Safe is my Cat?' Project??

Join us and let kids from Waitati, Karitane, Purakaunui and Port Chalmers schools tell you what their own cats have been up to!!

We are hosting a special event from 7pm to 8:30pm on Wednesday 30th November, at Orokonui Ecosanctuary and would love for you to come!

Check out the invitation below and let us know if you can make it!

Fantastic print making workshop at Pioneer Hall

Jenny, Lynn and their team of wonderful helpers ensured that everyone who walked through the doors to Pioneer Hall on Saturday had a great time.  It is such an addictive activity - making a background, finding gorgeous stencils, covering them with paint and winding them though the press to create your very own image.  

 Asheika concentrating on print making

Asheika concentrating on print making

 Katiya and her dissected rat print.

Katiya and her dissected rat print.

The more you did the more confident you became. I noticed how even the kids were experimenting with putting more that one stencil print on a background, putting more than one background under a stencil, or creating different prints half on/half off the page and my friend Katiya (6) even did a 2-colour print (as in painted two different colours onto the one stencil) - very clever!    

All of the work we created was themed around conservation (birds, trees, insects, pests, traps) and specifically the Halo Project (maps of the area, words relating to Orokonui and the Halo project). Once we had completed a few prints we got to tell our story.  We sat with Kat, an amazing story teller, who listened to us (individually) and turned our ramblings into a crafted story.   Our stories and our conservation artwork will all be turned into a beautiful calendar (by Lynn and Jenny) that we will sell next year.  If you attended on Saturday and made a print you will be able to pick up your originals from the Port Chalmers library in a few weeks time.  

 The photo here is a display of some of the work Jenny and her team did down on Stewart Island during the first of these workshops in 2015. 

The photo here is a display of some of the work Jenny and her team did down on Stewart Island during the first of these workshops in 2015. 

Thank you to Jenny, Lynn, Kat and the rest of the team for such a satisfying event. Thanks to Pioneer Hall for such a great space and thanks to the Port Chalmers Library for giving back the original prints to our print-makers. We raised money for the HALO project and had a lot of fun in the process. 

By Niki Bould


Pioneer Hall (45 George St) Port Chalmers
Saturday 19 Nov 10:30am - 5pm

Drop-in to Pioneer Hall on Sat 19th Nov to try your hand at print making to share your vision for local biodiversity.  It’s informal and gold coin donation.  You can take a look, have a try, settle in, come back!

Come along to:
- Hear the latest news from the Halo & Beyond Orokonui Projects; find out how you can help out more on your own section or in other local areas
- Be part of the community story & inspire others (a calendar* will be produced from your artwork with sales supporting the Halo Project)

Never made a print before? No problem – expert helpers will be on hand including artist/printmaker Lynn Taylor. You’ll soon be rolling out ink & spinning the press wheel. Select from premade printing plates like the ones above … so you don’t even have to draw - just make choices!

Printmaking is a great way to interact with others and focus your ideas; you can work individually, or with friends and family groups can make a collaborative work so even the youngsters can be involved.

See the Stewart Island/Rakiura & Otago Peninsula communities’ inspirational travelling art exhibition on biodiversity & predator-removal. 

For more info contact: TheSandpitCollective@gmail.com

* A perfect Christmas present … pre-order on the day!

Is a Predator Free NZ possible?

Here is an interesting audio link to Radio NZ, providing a good overview of the challenges of a Predator Free NZ.  The discussion about "the onion effect" has direct relevance to the Halo Project.  It is reassuring to hear others speak of the feasibility and relevance of projects such as ours.  What do you think?  Is it doable?