Theme: Nga Taonga a Tangaroacea
'Treasures of our Coast'
Seaweek NZ is organised by the Marine Education Society of Aotearoa Inc. It is an annual event celebrated every 3rd week in March since 1992. MESA NZ's vision is to create an awareness and knowledge of the marine environment so that all New Zealanders take personal responsibility for their interactions with it.
MESA NZ and Australia have developed a strong link, through support and sharing of experience, skills and resources.
|Kia Aroha - be loving
Kia Aroha - be loving
Be loving to our world
Kia Hiwa Ra - be alert
Be alert about what's happening to our home
Kia Tupato - be cautious
Be cautious about what you do
Kia Manawa Nui - be of great heart
Be of great heart to the endangered species
Be all of these things and it will make
the world a safer place to live in
It will be safer if we do it now
Kia Ngawari - be gentle
Be gentle with our world
Nathalie Condon, 13,
Manning Intermediate School
The New Zealand coastal environment is diverse. It is characterised by features such as long ocean beaches, exposed cliffs, bays, drowned valleys and numerous islands of varying sizes. Beneath the waves can be found a diversity of marine habitats such as kelp forests, sponge 'gardens', shellfish 'beds', canyons, coral 'beds' and all its fish and marine inhabitants. There is still much to be learnt about the coastal environment. Every year an average of 30 to 50 new species of fish are discovered.
It is important for all New Zealanders to ensure their natural heritage is protected now and into the future for the benefit and enjoyment of everyone. Overuse, exploration and apathy cause widespread damage and minimisation of examples of what life in the coastal water used to be like before humans arrived. Establishing marine and island reserves is becoming increasingly urgent and vital in the survival of native species and Offshore Islands - 'Treasure Islands'.
New Zealand comprises, in addition to the two main North and South Islands, just under 700 offshore Islands. The arrival of human settlers from Polynesia some 1000 years ago proved to become the beginning of the end for many plant and animal species. Offshore Islands offer hope for the survival of endangered wildlife. On the mainland competition with predators and loss of habitat has made survival impossible for many species, but on offshore Islands it is possible to control, monitor and protect these species.