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Community engagement

Footprints in the Sand, Powered by Westpac

Taking steps together for our future ocean

Community programme

The ocean is a vital part of our lives, supporting our wellbeing, work, recreation and kai moana. Over half the oxygen we breathe is produced from the ocean and in New Zealand we have over 15,000 km of coastline. Our marine environment faces extreme challenges from climate change and coastal development to resource exploitation and pollution. It is crucial that we continue to connect with our coast and learn how to care for it.

Join us in 2021 as we take steps together for a healthier ocean by learning about what makes our coast special and how we can step up as kaitiaki for our marine environment. We’ll be exploring our wet backyard, gathering information and sharing knowledge in our “Footprints in the Sand” programme, powered by Westpac.

Check out what is coming up and how you can get involved below:

People in high vis walking along the beach on a stormy day 1x

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Regular activities

Marine Encounters at the NZ Marine Studies Centre Tours

During a tour of the NZ Marine Studies Centre at Portobello, connect to your coast and meet local marine species to find out what makes them special, vulnerable and resilient. We’ll also get an insight into climate change research currently underway at the Portobello Marine Lab.

Wet and Wild Walks

Join an expert guide on a coastal walk. Discover a range of unique plants and animals and investigate how human activities are changing their homes.

“Eyes Underwater” – Livestreams

Explore the coastal and underwater world from the comfort of your home.

Snippets from the Sea

Join a variety of people who are connected to the ocean, marine science, climate change and sustainability fields for short presentations, films, afternoon tea and knowledge sharing.

Coastal Care Workshops

Get empowered with these specific skill workshops in photography, Marine Metre Squared, Litter Intelligence and more!

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2021 schedule:

February
Saturday 13 February – Ocean Acidification at the Reverse Science Fair

Visit the NZ Marine Studies Centre’s interactive station all about ocean acidification! Schools and the community can come be part of our rock pool simulation and snail turnover experiments, where we investigate effects of temperature, pH and more, in our ocean. The Reverse Science Fair is a showcase of women working in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics with hands-on activities related to their field, run by the Otago Museum.

For more information on the Ocean Acidification at the Reverse Science Fair

Sunday 21 February – Marine Encounters at the NZ Marine Studies Centre

During a tour of the NZ Marine Studies Centre at Portobello, connect to your coast and meet local marine species to find out what makes them special, vulnerable and resilient. We’ll also get an insight into climate change research currently underway at the Portobello Marine Lab.

Book a Marine Encounters at the NZ Marine Studies centre tour

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March
6 to 14 March - Seaweek
Two women sitting on wharf with technical equipment 226 image 1xMonday 8 March –Eyes Underwater – Livestream

What will we find off the coastline at the NZ Marine Studies Centre in this underwater explore with our Remote Operated Vehicle? Come join us in a dive off the coast from the comfort of your home or classroom.

Book in for the Eyes Underwater - Livestream

Saturday 13 March - Coastal Care Workshop: Marine Photography

Learn about photography on the seashore, indoor macro-photography and how we can use photography to help care for our coast.

Book in for the Coast Care Workshop: Marine Photography

Sunday 14 March - Marine Encounters at the NZ Marine Studies Centre

During a tour of the NZ Marine Studies Centre at Portobello, connect to your coast and meet local marine species to find out what makes them special, vulnerable and resilient. We’ll also get an insight into climate change research currently underway at the Portobello Marine Lab.

Book a Marine Enounters at the NZ Marine Studies centre tour

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April
22 to 28 April – Wild Dunedin Festival
Friday 23 April – Snippets from the Sea

Join a variety of experts who are connected to the ocean, marine science, climate change and sustainability fields for short presentations, films, afternoon tea and knowledge sharing.

For more details about Snippets from the Sea

Shrimp swimming 226 image 1xSunday 24 April – Wild Food Webs and Fishy Feasts

Join a marine scientist at the NZ Marine Studies Centre at Portobello to find out about marine food webs – who eats what in the ocean. Discover how local sea creatures are adapted to catch their food, avoid predators and stay alive. You will see microscopic plankton, investigate the stomach contents of a squid or shark and enjoy close up viewing of a variety of sea animals in our tanks and touch pools.

N.B. Booking link for Wild Food Webs and Fishy Feasts yet to be confirmed

Monday 26 April – Eyes Underwater – Rewilding

Dive underwater with our curator (and all round critter expert!) Adelle Heineman and the NZ Marine Studies Centre underwater remote operated vehicle as we check out how critters and seaweed have repopulated previously impacted areas. How do these areas differ from natural homes? Tune in from to find out!

Book in for Eyes Underwater - Rewilding

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May
Sunday 16 May – Marine Encounters at the NZ Marine Studies Centre

During a tour of the NZ Marine Studies Centre at Portobello, connect to your coast and meet local marine species to find out what makes them special, vulnerable and resilient. We’ll also get an insight into climate change research currently underway at the Portobello Marine Lab.

Book a Marine Encounters at the NZ Marine Studies centre tour

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