Establishing a baseline: Ecological monitoring for Panama Rock and Stones remnant, Le Bons Bay, Banks Peninsula

The eastern side of Banks Peninsula was created by eruptions and subsequent erosion of the Akaroa volcano which was active between 9 and 8 million years ago. Banks Peninsula was completely forested but due to human settlement approximately one percent of the forested area was left by the early 1900s. This large-scale removal of forest and the introduction of exotic mammals created a mass extinction of New Zealand’s native biota. The present day landscape is a mixture of bush occupying gullies which either escaped clearance or have regenerated due to more ideal moisture conditions and less disturbance from farming stock. The forested areas consist of either kanuka canopy or a mixed canopy of Fuchsia, mahoe, fivefinger, lemonwood, lacebark, ribbonwood, pigeonwood, kowhai and kaikomako. Within the eastern side of Banks Peninsula, inland from Le Bons Bay, is an area called Panama Rock, also known as Keller’s Peak. This peak is a trachyte dome with a feeder dike trending away south westwards. An invertebrate study on 19 covenant and reserves on eastern Banks Peninsula found that the Panama Rock remnant had high diversity compared to the others. The Panama Rock remnant was bought by the Joseph Langer Trust to conserve the native flora and fauna of the area and to make it available for the public to enjoy. This research aims to identify the native and pest fauna of the area. Monitoring will assist with management decisions by identifying: which native species are present, species in need of conservation, and exotic pests that need to be eradicated. Baseline surveys will allow the Trust to compare with future years and be able to gauge if their management actions are working. If the Trust is planning to trap introduced mammals at Panama Rock and/or the Stones remnant, monitoring will help to determine whether trapping is helping the native biodiversity.
Source DOI
© The Authors
Creative Commons Rights
Access Rights