hands-on environmental monitoring & ecology
College level study of ecology & related environmental sciences has a natural home in New Zealand with Kuaka.
Students get hands on experiences of environmental monitoring - water quality, biomass change, vegetation surveys, fauna presence / absence, endangered species rehabilitation & habitat restoration & natural succession of native plant species.
We have set up longitudinal research in environmental restoration & provide specific opportunities for college groups or interns to come & complete a range of environmental monitoring protocols to assess change over time. We project manage complete restoration sites & have set them up specifically for ongoing tertiary field work.
New Zealand has a very diverse landscape within a geographically small area, making the study of different ecosystems very accessible. The flora & fauna have evolved in isolation for millions of years, resulting in a high rate of endemism, up to 85%, with some species dating back to times before the dinosaurs. There were no terrestrial mammals, so New Zealand’s insects & birds evolved to fill the ecological niche of mammals.
Visit a leading kiwi breeding facility, & a ‘Mainland island’ conservation regime, the first of its kind in the world. During programs we consider the difference between the indigenous & colonial world view with regard to ecology & environmental protection, & look at cutting-edge horticultural research & development as part of an examination of human ecological effects.
New Zealand watersheds are contained in small geographical areas, allowing easy examination of the downstream effects from different land-use in the upper areas of the watershed. We use the spread of mangroves, a key environmental issue in the area, to examine the intertidal interface of land & sea environments, the effects of water flow & community group involvement in monitoring.