… a thousand words? Even more in our case I image, as it is very hard to describe a leaf of a tree, a rare bird or the energy of a group of volunteers. That is why we are extremely blessed to have not one, not two but THREE semi-professional photographers in our midst. Jacqui Geux runs the facebook page Waitakere Ranges West and does bird surveys for our neighbour Ark in the Park. No wonder she can find rare birds where others can’t, and if it wasn’t for that skill, we would miss out on many bird sightings, including our recent discovery of a pateke with a yellow (2015) leg band!

Stefan Marks has been a very regular volunteers at our working bees and events, and usually he brings along his enormous camera. Combined with this eye for detail and ear for birdsong, he is FAST and sends me a link to his pictures almost as soon as the day is over…We’ve got him to thank for catching the vibe of our Open Day, Kayak Days and many over our working bees, as well as for the action shots of birds in the air. He also contributes his pictures to the Birds Auckland facebook page.

Eric van Essen focuses on the small and the green, and is in the process of documenting everything you might encounter when you would visit either of our reserves. When he does his trap line on neighbouring Matuku Reserve or joins Matuku Link for a working bee, he always takes a bit longer than strictly necessary, as he’ll be botanising and taking pictures along the way. Some of his pictures are already in two white ring binders which we use to show our visitors what certain birds or plants look like when we’re talking about them.

And of course many volunteers are skilled photographers and share some of their highlights with me after their visit. Thank you for those, keep them coming and I’ll try credit you when I can (let me know if I forgot!).

Thank you Eric, Stefan and Jacqui for sharing your talents and keen eye with us, it helps me to tell the Matuku Link story 1000 times better.

Annalily – secretary Matuku Link 

(Top picture: fern bird – matata – by Stefan)