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mpi-biosecurity awards

Marine Metre² was honoured to win the Department of Conservation Community Pihnaga award at the New Zealand Biosecurity Awards hosted by the Ministry for Primary Industries and Ko Tātou – This is Us in Wellington last week. The award was for the project ‘Seashore Monitoring for Marine Pests – A Citizen Science Approach’ which focused participants’ attention on the issue of marine pests in the coastal space.

Marine Metre² provides a platform to engage the public in biosecurity monitoring and strengthen the efforts to protect New Zealand’s marine biodiversity. By increasing awareness of marine pests, the public can develop a sense of kaitiakitanga (guardianship) for our marine environment. Marine Metre² recognises the value in local knowledge as it is community concern for their shoreline that provides the drive to get involved – but this is just the beginning.

“The judges said it is exciting to see the broad range of community involvement across the country in both the community categories – from weed and pest management to support restoration projects through to citizen science for marine biosecurity. The judges noted that this is a very worthy winner who demonstrated how a really credible and engaging citizen science project could deliver positive outcomes for biosecurity. This is a great example of what citizen science projects should be all about and they look forward to seeing it grow in scope and outreach.

We would like to thank all the schools and community groups that got their “hands on and feet-wet” in this citizen science project. In addition to the Ministry for Primary Industries we would like to thank our other partners and supporters including the New Zealand Association for Environmental Education, Foundation North, the Otago Regional Council, and the University of Otago.