The Whitebait Connection Takaka programme is run by the provider organisation Tasman Bay Guardians Trust, in conjunction with Tasman District Council. It is funded by the Cobb Mitigation Fund through Tasman Environmental Trust (TET).
The Whitebait Connection (WBC) is a nationally active and recognised freshwater education programme developed and run at a national level by the Mountains to Sea Conservation Trust. Tasman Bay Guardians (TBG) is the regional provider of the WBC, Drains to Harbour, Nurture Nature and Experiencing Marine Reserves programmes.
Tasman Bay Guardians and Whitebait Connection’s goal is to reach all schools, connecting students and their communities to their environment and the amazing restoration projects in the Nelson Tasman area.
TET helped to launch TBG by providing funding for the first WBC deliveries based around the Motupipi River. The Takaka Primary School deliveries have been running yearly since 2018. As requested by the school and TDC, a staged approach of the programme has been developed which is woven through all ‘hubs’ groups. Younger junior hub students focus on freshwater fish species, the middle hub on macro-invertebrates and the senior hub on freshwater chemistry.
All stages require both in-class and infield lessons, with discussion on stream health indicators, catchments and what may be affecting the Motupipi waterway and others around it.