QEII Community Weedbusters Project - open for applications!
This is a joint programme run by Weedbusters NZ and the QEII National Trust supporting voluntary weed-busting efforts.
You don’t need to be looking after a QE11 Open Space Covenant. The funding is open to community groups and individuals doing general weed-busting work as well as to QEII covenantors doing weed control work on their own properties.
Funding is usually up to $1,000 per project towards costs such as tools, herbicides, volunteer petrol vouchers, mulcher hire, greenwaste disposal, promotional activities within communities. It can’t be used to pay contractors and there are some other conditions.
If you’d like to apply simply email Mike Urlich firstname.lastname@example.org with a one paragraph description of your weed-busting project and what you would like funding for. This fund is open for a while but if interested you are encouraged to contact Mike soon to apply or find out more!
The QEII Community Weedbusters Project is a joint programme run by Weedbusters NZ and the QEII National Trust. Using a fund granted by DOC’s Community Conservation Partnership Fund the project supports voluntary weedbusting efforts by community groups in priority regions around the country.
Over 255 groups are now registered with Weedbusters as tackling weeds in their local areas. These groups are spread throughout New Zealand and work across a range of ecosystems and landscapes and across a variety of land tenures, from private covenants to gully systems, council parks and DOC reserves. These Weedbusters groups are mainly small, informal, and made up of friends and neighbours who work in their own ‘big backyards’ close to where they live, often on species and sites that otherwise wouldn’t have any weed control in place at all. Most are informal collectives who are not set up to apply for funding themselves, but are in need of modest levels of support through materials and resources to help them continue their weedbusting efforts.
Some of this funding has been set aside as Weedbusters Quick Wins to help out weedbusting groups and individuals/couples with ‘small scale’ costs such as tools, herbicides, mulcher hire, greenwaste disposal, promotional activities within communities to get more folk involved, and so on. There are a few conditions around this:
- Groups or individuals must have registered as Weedbusters through the online registration page.
- Projects can be on public land, or on private land where two or more landowners are working together to clear areas of weeds by either targeting specific high-risk species or as part of a wider restoration project. The project is not to be based in private gardens (not including undeveloped gullies) or on productive farmland.
- The funding must be for weed-related initiatives, not for replanting or releasing recently planted native trees (funding for this is usually available through other schemes administered by councils and government departments).
- The weed control must be carried out in accordance with best practice weed management techniques as outlined on the Weedbusters website for each weed species. It must be carried out by volunteers, not contractors.
There is also a funding under QEII Quick Wins, assisting QEII Open Space covenantors in weed control work on their own properties.
Limitations on funding
Funding from the QEII Community Weedbusting Project can’t be used to pay for contractors, but we have found ways to help other groups leverage off the work they are doing to find ways to get this contractor work underway through other parties. That is, however, an offshoot, and not an integral part of this funding and only works in some cases!
What we ask in return
For each chunk of funding we are distributing through the QEII Community Weedbusters Project, we are asking for good stories and pictures for media releases and website features to promote weedbusting and the Project.
Weedbusters Quick Win projects supported so far
Weedbusting groups to be supported under the QEII Community Weedbusting Project since 2016 have been chosen as they represented a range of habitat types: islands, fenced sanctuaries, wetlands, rivers, alpine, lake, forest and peninsula. Priority was given to groups that were working near other emerging weed control projects, making them potentially part of a wider landscape level community weed control effort:
Northland’s Project Island Song works on weeds including wild ginger, ink weed and woolly nightshade on the islands off the eastern bay of the Bay of Islands (collective known as Ipipiri). Follow up of previous weed control work is a top priority. Quite often volunteers get lifts donated by local operators and private boats but occasionally they have missed key windows to do follow-up work on previous weed control as they haven’t had boats available when needed. Project Island Song have been funded through the QEII Community Weedbusting Project for petrol vouchers to help volunteers access islands for weeding bees when needed rather than when it is offered.
Auckland’s Leigh Harbour Valley Society is working on the restoration of an area of fenced coastal bush behind Leigh Harbour and around the Leigh Harbour Walkway. Most of the catchment was cleared and farmed until the 1930s, but the bush in this area is beginning to regenerating. The area includes both QEII and Auckland Council Covenants and includes riparian margins. Tradescantia, privet and ginger are major weeds for the project. The QEII Community Weedbusting Project is supporting their efforts with funding for weed bags for disposal of ginger rhizomes and tools.
Maketū Ongatoro Wetland Society work on one of the least modified dune systems in the Western Bay of Plenty but pest plants including pampas, marram grass and boxthorn if left unchecked have the potential to smother open sand areas which are used by nesting birds. The weeds also provide cover for pests that predate on nesting birds. The group works on the ecological restoration of Maketu and Waihi harbours and the surrounding area. The Society have four major long-term projects running and the removal of weeds is central to all of them. The QEII Community Weedbusting Project is supporting their efforts with funding for a weed eater, wheel barrow and tools.
Weed Action Whangarei Heads, also in Northland, is a community-led peninsula-wide project which is capitalising on growing environmental awareness on the Whangarei Heads peninsula due to current animal pest control work protecting kiwis funded by Northland Regional Council. Weed Action Whangarei Heads is approaching people who are already doing weed control work, finding the gaps, and encouraging everyone to get actively weedbusting in their own backyard and their big back yard using the resources provided. Their aim is to control the weeds already present and raise community awareness to keep other weed species out. The QEII Community Weedbusting Project is supporting their efforts with funding for weed control tool kits for volunteers.
Ngatiawa River Monastery is a spiritual community located in Reikorangi Valley, on the Kapiti Coast north of Wellington. The Monastery has been clearing the stream and Ngatiawa river banks that run through the property of weeds such as tradescantia, blackberry and barberry, and replanting with natives to hold the banks from erosion. The QEII Community Weedbusting Project is supporting their efforts with funding towards herbicides for this weed work.
Nelson Tasman Weedbusters are a small ‘flying squad’ of local volunteers working on private properties with significant stands of rare native bush that have been covenanted through Tasman District Council. These remnants are facing infestations of invasive weeds and Nelson Tasman Weedbusters can help landowners gain the weed control skills they need and also a helping hand doing the actual work where needed. The QEII Community Weedbusting Project is supporting their efforts with funding for a petrol drill for controlling weedy trees.
Nelson-Tasman’s Friends of Pearl Creek work on a wetland conservation project along this spring fed creek that flows into the wider Waimea Estuary, and which is home to giant kokopu, long fin eel and inanga. The wetlands also provides habitat for kotuku, bittern, fernbird, spotless marsh crake and banded rail, all nationally at risk. The project’s aim is to protect the waterway and the surrounding habitat to allow the existing fauna to survive and flourish. The QEII Community Weedbusting Project is supporting their efforts with funding for tools and herbicides.
Canterbury’s Lake Alexandrina Conservation Trust formed to bring local hut owners and lake users together to protect the environment around this reserve, which supports a range of nationally important birdlife including the Southern crested grebe, native lizard populations and native flora. The Trust runs weeding bees for volunteers tackling shoreline areas of sweet briar and wilding pine which have restricted access to the lake and provided a refuge for predators. The QEII Community Weedbusting Project is supporting their efforts with funding for tools and small chainsaws.
The volunteers of the Lindis Pass Conservation Group work across the landscape in this sub-alpine area of Canterbury under a Memorandum of Understanding with the local DOC rangers, tackling a range of species including sweet briar and lupins. The QEII Community Weedbusting Project is supporting their efforts with funding for tools, Growsafe training, knapsack sprayers and petrol vouchers for volunteers providing transport to working bees.
Dunedin’s Save The Otago Peninsula (STOP) undertakes weed control projects in bush remnants and revegetation areas on both public and private land on the Otago Peninsula. Species that STOP tackles include banana passionfruit, gorse, broom, sycamore, Chilean flame creeper, greater bindweed and Darwin’s barberry across nine separate sites. The QEII Community Weedbusting Project is supporting their efforts with funding for Growsafe training and herbicide.
Quarantine Island/Kamau Taurua Community Trust are tackling a variety of weed species while they gradually replant this historic island in Otago Harbour with eco-sourced natives. The Trust relies on volunteers to do this weedbusting, and would like to host several weeding bees over summer. In conjunction with Monarch Tours, the QEII Community Weedbusting Project is supporting the Trust’s efforts with funding for boat transfers to and from Quarantine Island for volunteers.
The volunteers with Canterbury’s Quail Island Trust run twice monthly weeding bees to maintain control of a number of weed species – including wilding pines, boneseed and pig’s ear - on this historic island in Lyttelton Harbour. The QEII Community Weedbusting Project is supporting the Trust’s efforts with funding for tools and herbicides.
Volunteers at Waikato’s Maungatautari Ecological Island Trust are determined to keep weed species, such as Himalayan honeysuckle, from spreading into the 3400 hectares of predator-free bush that makes up this sanctuary. The QEII Community Weedbusting Project is supporting the Trust’s efforts with funding for herbicide.
Whanganui-Manawatu’s Bushy Park is a longstanding community-led conservation project including 87 ha of intact remnant of lowland forest (now rare in this region) and a restored wetlands area surrounded by a predator-proof fence. Volunteers are a critical element of this model, and already form a strong passionate core contributing between 500 and 1000 volunteer hours per month, on a combination of predator checks, weed control and biodiversity monitoring and support. The QEII Community Weedbusting Project is supporting the Trust’s efforts with funding for Growsafe training for volunteers.
Southland’s Stewart Island/Rakiura Community Environment Trust (SIRCET) is a non-profit organisation involved in protecting and enhancing the environment and community of Stewart Island. There are a variety of weed species that are a threat to Stewart Island’s ecosystems, and SIRCET is working with the community to tackle them. The QEII Community Weedbusting Project is supporting the Trust’s efforts with funding for tools and herbicides.
Auckland’s Waiheke Island is a hot bed of weeds issues, and Waiheke Resources Trust is working with the island community to promote sustainability and care of local biodiversity and runs weed disposal weekends to assist locals. The QEII Community Weedbusting Project is supporting the Trust’s efforts with funding for community weed awareness initiatives.
Waikato’s Moehau Environment Group is a non-profit volunteer organization dedicated to the protection and enhancement of the natural environment of the Northern Coromandel Peninsula. MEG’s vision is to become the largest open sanctuary in New Zealand-a remote coastal landscape where people live, work and holiday; wetlands and forests are regenerating; the bird-song is deafening; and treasured species like kiwi, pateke, bellbird, whitehead thrive. Controlling weeds is an important part of this. The QEII Community Weedbusting Project is supporting the Trust’s efforts with funding for tools and herbicides for local weed control initiatives.
Whangawehi Catchment Management Group share a desire to maintain or improve the different cultural, ecological, recreational and economical values of the Whangawehi Catchment. The protection and enhancement of remaining biodiversity values such as threatened forest and wetland habitat means that weed control is ongoing. Over the past three years the group has established 135 000 native trees. The QEII Community Weedbusting Project is supporting the Group’s efforts with funding for herbicides for weed control.
Wild for Taranaki is the Taranaki Biodiversity Trust, established in 2015 by 19 groups and organisations involved in the protection of native plants, animals and ecosystems in Taranaki to raise the profile of biodiversity in their community and to support the work already being done by individuals, community groups and organisations, as well as encourage new initiatives. The QEII Community Weedbusting Project is supporting the Trust’s efforts with funding for tools and herbicides for local weed control initiatives including Huatoki Conservation Group, Patea Planting Trust, North Taranaki Forest and Bird, and Taranaki Conservationists.
West Coast’s Karamea Estuary Enhancement Project (KEEP) is providing educational opportunities and active involvement for members of the community and local school students, creating a walkway and revegetating the area with native flora so that locals and visitors can view and value the heritage and natural features of this estuarine area. The QEII Community Weedbusting Project is supporting KEEP’s efforts with funding for herbicides for local weed control work.