Coastal & rocky shore education

With over 180 degrees of coastline, there are plenty of locations and different environments to study around the Taranaki coast.

Coastal - Students studying down by the rocky shore 

Rocky shore

Rocky reefs dominate the Taranaki coastline and provide a wonderful habitat to explore and learn about the creatures that live there. Intertidal rocky reefs represent the boundary between the land and the sea, resulting in sharp environmental change. As a consequence, lots of different animals and seaweeds can be found, all adapted to the zone on the shore that they live. This makes the rocky shore an ideal place for your students to learn about important ecological concepts including zonation, adaptation, food webs and other species interactions.

Our education officer, Dr Emily Roberts, is a marine biologist keen to provide support for your rocky shore studies. Your students can learn all about species found on Taranaki rocky reefs through a presentation followed by a visit to the rocky shore. Typically the lesson and field trip focus on species identification and adaptations in addition to practicing good tikanga. More advanced quantitative surveys can be undertaken on request.

Marine education resources can also be downloaded or ordered from the New Zealand Marine Studies Centre: link)

Other coastal activities

There are lots of other types of coastal monitoring and action projects that you and your students can get involved with. Get in touch to discuss options and find out how we can provide support. What you can do might be influenced by the type of marine environments and species near your school.

Coastal - Crab in the seagrass

Here are some examples of what we’ve been helping schools with:

  • Seagrass monitoring with Waitara High School
  • Shellfish surveys with Urenui, Mimi and Uruti schools as part of a Ngāti Mutunga led Curious Minds project
  • Little blue penguin footprint survey and related action projects with Mimi School
  • Litter collection survey with Highlands Intermediate as part of the Sustainable Coastlines Litter Intelligence long-term litter monitoring programme