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History of Polhill Restoration Project
This group is comprised of Polhill patrons keen to enhance the birds'n'bush sharing the space by undertaking trapping and restoration mahi. The long term pest control work of the WRC and WCC in the reserve was extended in 2015 via the establishment of an intensive grid of DOC200 and Goodnature A24 traps. DOC200s are set up on tracks every 50m and placed to be accessible to trappers; A24s plug gaps in the gullies. This network is fully maintained by community volunteers.
The group aims to build on the pioneering work of projects such as the Waimapihi Restoration Trust and to help realise the ambitions of those folks in the 1970s and 1980s who campiagned to protect Polhill for the future. Partnerships have been established with local groups like Brooklyn Trail Builders, and local businesses such as Goodnature and Garage Project. A planting partnership was established with the Trail Builders in winter 2016, which aims to progressively return examples of the original forest (rata, hinau, miro, tawa etc) to the regenerating bush.
The reserve is home to tieke/saddleback, hihi/stichbird, toutouwai/robin, karearea/falcon, popokatea/whitehead, and kakariki; as well as tui, kereru, riroriro/grey warbler, piwakawaka/fantail, ruru /morepork and pipiwharauroa/shining cuckoo. Kaka and tieke have both bred successfully in Polhill. The tieke nest discovered in 2014 was the first (known) saddleback nest 'in the wild' (outside of an offshore island or fenced sanctuary) on the mainland in over a century. Tieke bred successfully again in Polhill in 2015.
A comprehensive restoration plan for the group was written by Fulbright Scholar Jason Preble (Victoria University) in 2015.