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Golden Bay locals celebrate World Wetland day by playing in the mud

Submitted by on February 7, 2013 – 12:20 pm

To celebrate World Wetlands Day on February end, Golden Bay’s (Tasman, New Zealand) Forest and Bird members and Tasman District Council Environmental Educator Claire Webster run a ‘Motupipi Estuary Rescue’ event.

27 locals (ranging in age from 17 to 70) turned up to spend time with Otago University Marine Biologist Richard de Hamel.

“We learnt such things as the big snails on the estuary mud are actually bigger because they are sterile due to having a virus. As they can’t expend lots of energy reproducing they just grow bigger,” said Claire.

“Then lugging spades, split mussel buoys or snow sleds we then headed out across the estuary to dig out and retrieve nearly 100 tyres, plus many tyre side walls, rubber matting, tyre tubes and lots of other items including 2 kitchen sinks!”

Claire said the debris arrived in the December floods in 2011 and had been “slowly leaking toxins in the surrounding environment.”

“We have no idea where the debris came from but the large number on tyre sidewalls makes a farm silage pit less likely,” she said.

“Council will now dispose of the waste. Many thanks to everyone who helped out with this clean up – it really was very hard work!”

FACT:  Members of Club Happyzine automatically go in weekly draws to win New Zealand’s most sustainably produced gifts, join up today for as little as $1 per week!

Send in your inspiring community stories today! charlotte@happyzine.co.nz

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