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Trip Report - Solomon Knob” spur, Wainuiomata Catchment

Trip Report – 1 May 2010:   Solomon Knob” spur, Wainuiomata Catchment

We set off in sunlight and on a good foot-pad, to climb gently through manuka, kanuka and unfortunately too much tree heath, Spanish heath, and pig-rooting.   A Cordyline banksii overhung the track and Gahnia pauciflora and G. setifolia were common trackside.   In a clearing we saw a tall, dead, orchid stem with just enough capsule material remaining for us to be sure it was Orthoceras novae-zeelandiae, horned orchid.   Similarly, a wispy, dying stem and capsule was thought to be Petalochilus chlorostylus, taking our orchid list to seven.   Soon we were under regenerating, broadleaved forest where we lunched in light rain, then continued up into tall, mixed podocarp / beech forest where someone spotted epiphytic Pitttosporum cornifolium, an addition.   Later, higher-altitude herbaceous species such as Luzuriaga parviflora and Libertia micrantha greeted us among a wealth of fern species, and it was here we heard NZ falcon.   Those of our group with high-register hearing capability were even able to identify a “rifleperson”, taking our indigenous bird count to twelve species.   On the way down to meet our 4 p.m. deadline set by the ranger, we saw one plant of Hymenophyllum franklinii.   A very good day, with ten additions to our plant list.

Participants :   Sam Buckley, Barry Dent, Glenys Evans, Sue Freitag, Bryan Halliday, Chris Hopkins, Chris Horne and Barbara Mitcalfe (Co-leaders), Chris Moore, Syd Moore, Mick Parsons, Cathy Wylie.


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