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Bioblitz 2019 - stone wētā 

Welcome to Bioblitz - what's living in your backyard?. This field trip takes place on 2-4 April 2019 and is supported by the Ministry of Education/Te Tāhuhu o te Mātauranga and the Department of Conservation/Te Papa Atawhai. Enrol now.


Take a breathtaking journey into the heart of the Southern Alps to explore Ō Tū Wharekai, a unique highcountry wetland area. Join experts from the Department of Conservation to find out how to complete a Bioblitz and investigate the biodiversity of this stunning glacial carved landscape.

The air you breathe, the water you drink and the food you eat all rely on biodiversity. Biodiversity is not something that only exists in places like Ō Tū Wharekai. Your own backyard can be home to a surprising variety of plants and animals. On this field trip you will learn how to find, identify and record living things so you can then discover what's living in your own backyard.


Follow the mighty Rangitata River, one of the braided rivers that helped form the Canterbury Plains up into the Hakatere Conservation Park. Explore Ō Tū Wharekai, a protected wetland area nestled amongst high country tussocklands and surrounded by the towering Southern Alps/Kā Tiritiri o te Moana.

Ō Tū Wharekai is one of three sites that make up the national Arawai Kākāriki wetland restoration programme. This programme aims to protect wetlands and increase our understanding of these productive environments.

Journey to Ō Tū Wharekai, one of New Zealand's most precious freshwater wetland sites. Image: LEARNZ.  

Field Trip Plan

Monday 1 April
Travel day Image: LEARNZ

Travel day: Read the diary about the journey from Dunedin to Mt Somers to begin the BioBlitz field trip. Read the ambassador updates.

Tuesday 2 April
Day 1 Monitoring Techniques Image: LEARNZ

Day 1: Explore Ō Tū Wharekai and watch the videos to discover what's living in this unique high country wetland. Read the diary to find out about a variety of strategies used to catch, identify and record local animals. See how you could use similar techniques to find out what lives in your backyard. Watch the recorded web conference and read the ambassador updates.

Wednesday 3 April
Day 2 Identifying and Analysing Image: Colin Meurk

Day 2: Work with experts to identify and monitor native and introduced plants and animals. Watch the videos to see what animals live in Ō Tū Wharekai. Read the diary to discover more about the invertebrates you can catch here. Watch the recorded web conference and read the ambassador updates.

Thursday 4 April
Restoring biodiversity Image: LEARNZ

Day 3: Watch the videos to see how you can take action to preserve and restore biodiversity to an area. Read the diary to discover more unique species found on the final day of the BioBlitz. Watch the recorded web conference and read the ambassador updates.

What's New

Monday 1 April

Newsletter 3 was sent to all enrolled teachers.

Monday 18 March

Newsletter 2 was sent to all enrolled teachers.

Monday 4 March Background reading pages are now online. 
Monday 4 March

Bioblitz 2019 website is now online.

The LEARNZ Team think that joining the NZASE and staying connected through the NZ Science Teacher will help you become a better teacher of science.