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Trip Report - Oruaiti Reserve, Seatoun; Miramar Peninsula, north end
Melicytus obovatus
Melicytus obovatus
Melicytus obovatus agg.   Illustration:   Eleanor Burton.

Trip Report – 3 August 2013:   Oruaiti Reserve, Seatoun; Miramar Peninsula, north end

Miramar Peninsula had several botanical surprises for BotSoccers and representatives of the Port Nicholson Trust alike on this beautiful, calm, winter’s day.   The mild weather, an easterly with rare drizzle, meant we could explore the coastal cliff s and rock stacks without having to use both hands to cling on with, as is often the case on this exposed coastline.   Following a 1 April 2011 BotSoc trip to Breaker Bay and Oruaiti Reserve / Point Dorset, we began with a brief excursion along the Seatoun Beach end of Oruaiti Reserve.   This brought home to us how few naturally occurring plants and species exist at this popular recreation spot.   Moving to the rock stack at the east end of Kau Bay, we saw some of the species diversity that could return to Oruaiti Reserve with a little help from nature and Homo sapiens.

Naturally occurring Aciphylla squarrosa, Melicytus obovatus agg., Pimelea prostrata, Thelymitra sp, some battered coastal turf, and a myriad of small herbs, rushes and sedges.   After lunch, we went to the north end of Shelly Bay.

Miramar Peninsula BotSoccers
BotSoccers explore a rock stack on Miramar Peninsula.
Photo:   Sunita Singh.
Here some of the less intrepid of us botanised through binoculars, and checked the bottom of the cliff, while others scaled the heights.   Species diversity was higher than the previous two sites, with notable additions to our list including:   Carmichaelia australis, Clematis forsteri and Kunzea ericoides.   Exhausted, we repaired to the Roxy Cinema cafe to revive.   During the day we compared our finds with John Buchanan’s 1872 species list for Miramar Peninsula (Transactions and Proceedings of the Royal Society of NZ Vol. 5).   While we did not expect to find all the plants from his list at the coastal sites we visited, there were many species that we did not find.

Participants :   Bev Abbott, Hiroshi Araya, Gavin Dench, Fenella Fenton, Frances Forsyth (co-leader / scribe), Bryan Halliday, Chris Horne, Terese McLeod, Barbara Mitcalfe, Kaira Ranganui-Love, Nick Saville, Sunita Singh (co-leader), Julia Stace.


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