The Gulf Innovation Fund Together (G.I.F.T) – a Foundation North initiative, recently awarded a grant of $150,000 to a project in conjunction with the George Mason Centre for the Natural Environment, based at the University of Auckland.
The grant will fund the work of Jenny Hillman, a doctoral candidate in Marine Science at the University of Auckland, whose project will aim to develop new technologies and techniques that communities in the Hauraki Gulf can use to successfully restore shellfish species.
Ms Hillman’s work forms part of a larger project, Hilltops to Ocean, which has received a $650,000 grant from the George Mason Centre to investigate the role of mitigation in natural ecosystems and the potential for enhancement through restoration.
Dr Luitgard Schwendenmann from the School of Environment says recent research suggests that sediment, nutrient and organic matter loads from intensified land use is leading to the loss of marine vegetation in freshwater and coastal ecosystems.
Read more about GIFT www.giftofthegulf.org.nz
Read more about the George Mason Centre for the Natural Environment www.science.auckland.ac.nz/gmcne
Mussel bed photo: Jenny Hillman