Bugs, birds and gardens - lockdown ideas for all the family

If you thought staying at home was boring, you’ve got a whole new world waiting to be discovered.

Taranaki Regional Council has created a range of online resources to inspire locals to make the most of their backyards and gardens – both during the lockdown and beyond.

The country is now in its second week of a Level 4 lockdown due to the Covid-19 pandemic, with Kiwis uniting to stay home and save lives. Council staff working from home have come up with new ways of interacting with and sharing their knowledge with the Taranaki community.

Backyard Biodiversity - Taiao Taiepa Ki Tua is a joint initiative by Council education officer Emily Roberts and Ash Muralidhar from the Rotokare Scenic Reserve Trust. From their respective backyards they have created a video series helping kids of all ages find out what bugs, birds, lizards, and plants live in their gardens.

Twice a week the enthusiastic pair will share cool creatures, fun activities and awesome trivia on Aotearoa’s native urban species; encouraging children to head outside to explore their own backyards.

The Taranaki Enviroschools team is also working closely with the region’s educators as they prepare to shift to online teaching. Through its Facebook page the team is regularly sharing environment-themed ideas and resources with a focus on things families can do at home – from cooking to nature hunts to colouring.

There’s good news for adults too, particularly those keen to dig out their gardening gloves during lockdown.

The Council’s three public gardens – Pukeiti, Hollard Gardens and Tupare – are closed to the public. However their talented gardeners have been hard at work in their own gardens snapping photos and producing videos on a range of topics – from potting to feijoas to growing seasonal vegetables.

The team are looking forward to sharing their gardening knowledge and interacting with locals online. People are encouraged to ask questions and share their own garden photos and videos.

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