In the “Protecting our seas DVD

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What you’ll see

The camera travels through a mangrove forest first above then below the surface. Schools of juveniles which use mangrove estuaries as a nursery are seen as are a range of other species which live in these shallow waters. More shots of the mangroves above the water and schooling juvenile fish illustrate the important role of this habitat.

Children from the Experiencing Marine Reserves educational programme are then seen wading through the water and exploring amongst the mangroves followed by underwater shots of a crab and a gurnard with fins outspread like butterfly wings. An on-screen message “Globally 1 million hectares of mangroves have been destroyed in the last ten years” then appears over shots of new mangrove shoots amongst Neptune’s necklace seaweed and ending with a broken off shoot floating free in mid-water.

What you’ll learn

Long Bay – Okura Marine Reserve protects a nutrient-rich mangrove forest which provides shelter and a nursery habitat for many juvenile fishes like parore and spotties.

Internationally mangrove forests are severely threatened due to pollution and coastal development; globally 1 Million hectares of mangroves have been destroyed in the last 10 years. This habitat destruction places heavy pressure on the many species which spend the early stages of their life cycle in this important ecosystem. New Zealand is one of the few places where healthy mangrove estuaries have been maintained.

Educational programmes such as Experiencing Marine Reserves educate kiwi kids about our marine environment by fossicking amongst the trees’ roots. Here they may come across a number of estuarine species, such as hermit crabs, shrimps, gobies, eels and a variety of shellfish.

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