Northern grass skink on the escarpment. Photo: Paul Callister
Local conservation group Ngā Uruora is inviting the community to come and help build rock piles beside the Paekākāriki Escarpment Track to help create habitat for skinks and geckos.
Project lead Paul Callister says volunteers will have a good chance of seeing two of the four species of lizards Ngā Uruora have found on the escarpment so far: Northern grass skinks and Raukawa geckos. Copper skinks and brown skinks are also present but are more difficult to find.
There are over 100 species of lizards in New Zealand and 85% of these are at risk or threatened due to habitat loss and predation.
The Lizard Habitat Restoration Project is funded by The Kapiti Biodiversity Project, WWF New Zealand and The Tindall Foundation. Weeds have been cleared from a 1300 square meter area and native species will be planted this winter to provide food and hiding places for native lizards. Intensive trapping in this area also means it is relatively free of predators.
The rocks are sharp so you will need gloves. If you have a wheelbarrow that would also be useful but not essential.
Where: Meet at the Paekākāriki Escarpment Track entrance by the SH1 bridge.
When: 9.45am on Sunday 25th February.
More details can be found on the event page on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/events/1155660727936267/