Monday 13th April, 2009
Otapahi Reserve on Otago Peninsula was purchased by the Trust in 1997, and in order to minimise human disturbance is not open to the public.
The 22 ha reserve is home to around 20 breeding pairs of yellow-eyed penguins, and revegetation work to improve the quality of the penguin nesting habitat has taken place since the purchase.
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Between 1998 and 2000 an average of 1,800 trees and shrubs were planted annually, with 2,500 in the 2007 planting season. Funded by the Department of Conservation's Biodiversity Condition Fund, they were grown in the Trust Nursery at Company Bay on Otago Peninsula.
Trees and shrubs are protected with netting cages and maintained with herbicide spray for a minimum of three years. By this time they are usually able to outcompete the exotic pasture grasses which are the main obstacle to success for many restoration projects.
Trapping, which is undertaken year round in the reserve and on neighbouring farmland, seems also to have benefited the titi or mutton bird that have established a small colony in an area adjacent to the reserve.