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Project type:
Conservation project
Branches involved:
Regions involved:
Top of the South
Paremata Flats reserve, Nelson

Paremata Flats, near Cable Bay, Nelson

Paremata Flat Reserve is a publicly-owned area, under the jurisdiction of Nelson City Council, that encompasses tidal, river and land biodiversity systems.

The reserve, on the shoreline of Delaware Bay is one of Nelson City's best kept secrets. 20kms North of Nelson, this remnant of coastal forest and surrounding estuary is home to fernbirds and banded rail.

In an ecological evaluation the Nelson City Council gave the reserve the highest value, due to the patch of lowland coastal forest which contains a number of locally rare native trees. The reserve has been fenced off since 2000, and our branch has run a twice-weekly volunteer pest trapping program since 2007, which has helped to stabilise fernbird and banded rail populations.

Paremata Flats May 2016

Paremata Flats May 2016. Credit: Ian Price

Paramata Flats May 2019

Paremata Flats May 2019. Credit: Ian Price

Banded rail are shy, secretive and reluctant to take to the air. They are found in swamps dominated by reeds and sedges.

We have also held annual planting days to restore the area with species of makaka, Olearia solandri, flax, kahikatea, kowhai, and Melicytus and Pittosporum species.

These species provide food and shelter for fernbirds, tui and kereru.

By planting podocarps in the reserve Forest & Bird will also help in the restoration of a once extensive alluvial podocarp forest.

Paremata Flats updated facts and figures as at 7th June 2019

  1. F&B have raised $190,000.00 since 2011 to plant 94,918 native eco sourced trees.
  2. 1,235 volunteers have given 5,183 hours to plant 94,918 trees.
  3. Since 2007 4,802 volunteer hours have been given by 41 trappers to a twice weekly pest control management programme.
  4. 8,856 pests have been removed from Paremata, Uri O Te Wai and Maori Pa Rd trap lines.
  5. 5,504 volunteer hours have gone into weed control.
  6. 1,100 volunteer hours have gone into admin work and organising.
  7. 569 volunteers hours have been spent collecting native seeds.
  8. 112 volunteer hours into native plant propagation.
  9. 836 Volunteer hours into Pest monitoring.
  10. 570 Volunteer Hours into track development and maintenance.
  11. The past two years Nelson City Council (NCC) has been actively supporting the Paremata ecological restoration project as part of the Nelson Nature (Bursting with Life, healthy River, healthy community project) in conjunction with Landcare and the Hira Community.  The purpose of the project is to enhance the health of the Whakapuaka River and as part of this NCC has donated over 7,000 native plants to enhance the riparian margin of the Whakapuaka River which Forest and Bird has just completed the planting of.
  12. 152 Volunteer hours went into the watering of early plantings at the start of the 2016 planting season due to drying winds kicking in after initial rains with 14,500 Litres of water being ferried by way of 20 Litre containers and 100/500 litre water tanks with hose to ensure plant survival.
  13. 210 hours went into Rubbish cleanup in Delaware Bay.

Total Volunteer Hours given to the project 19,038 if you charged this out at the minimum wage of $17.70 per hour then the very conservative dollar contribution by volunteers would be close to $337,000.00 and when combined with the money raised  the total sum  given to the project by Forest and Bird, Sponsors  and volunteers, would be close to $530,000.

  • Set up a website
  • Ian Price received Kiwi Bank Local Hero award 2015
  • Ian Price received Pride of NZ finalist 2014 conservation
  • Project received Community Award from NZ Plant Conservation network.

We have a community contact list of over 379 emails the actual contacts would be a lot higher.   
Over 280 traps are activated on Paremata, Uri O Te Wai and along Maori Pa Rd, of these 112 are mouse traps; this does not include traps placed in the field by Bruce Thomas as part of his research with his Kamate Traps.

Forest and Bird planters at Paremata Reserve

Forest and Bird planters at Paremata Reserve

Check out Paremata Flats website for updates

Project or Reserve contact

Julie McLintock
03 545 0989

Last updated:

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