Sunday, 27 April 2014

Tracking tunnels part 2- what we found

This week we have been working hard to collect in all the cards that we put out last week.

The most exciting find was this card-

These are lizard prints!
After 1000 cards with weta, ants, beetles and spider prints, finding this card had the team really excited!
After an unsuccessful round of pitfall trapping last month, we were really pleased to find these prints.
We know that lizards are in the sanctuary because they are being seen, their prints are being found in tunnels and they are being heard- they are obviously just far too smart to fall into our traps.
Lizards are an indicator speices. They indiciate the level of predation in an area. If there are no predators, there should be plenty of lizards. With Lake Rotokare now reaching the end of its 5th year as predator free, we should be seeing lizard numbers growing.
Weta are the other indicator species the team at Rotokare are really interested in knowing about. Our tracking tunnel run has shown that we have TONNES of weta.
The other neat thing to happen during the collection of the tunnel cards was a visit from my Year 8 students. (Read the next post to find out more. )
I was lucky enough to be joined last Sunday by a young man called Blair and his carer Sylvia. We spent an enjoyable few hours collecting the cards from the edge of the lake. It was neat to work with a young man who has a disability but was so keen to be out in the environment learning and helping. Blair took the following photo of me resetting some mouse traps- Thanks Blair!

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