The field notes below is part of the Protecting our estuaries education resource - an integrated curriculum teaching resource using New Zealand’s estuaries as a real-life context for learning.
Download the resource
Learning opportunities at this site
Manukau Harbour is an internationally significant feeding and breeding area for migratory birds and demonstrates Auckland’s natural coastal environment. The area also has a rich history of Māori settlement and features numerous archaeological sites.
Ambury Regional Park (Ambury Farm) hosts a working farm, shorebird habitat and scenic walks. You can also visit Huia, French Bay Beach, Onehunga Foreshore, and Awhitu.
In the notes, you'll find guidance to do:
- sandy shore surveys - do a survey to look for changes on the shore over time
- five minute bird counts - find and count the birds along the shore and identify them
- an estuary survey - discovery seaweeds, plants, snails, crabs and other small animals
Native or endemic species to explore
You can explore the following species here, and use the notes to learn more their habitats:
- the harbour hosts a significant number of the 100,000 bar-tailed godwit/kuaka visiting NZ each year, who fly all the way from Alaska
- pied stilt/poaka, variable oystercatcher/torea pango, white-faced heron/matuku moana, reef herons/tῑkāka and paradise ducks are commonly seen along the Foreshore Walk
Curriculum learning areas
- Social science