Make a difference

There are many ways you can help out TOSSI.


Anyone can join in at Tāwharanui.

All our activities rely on volunteers. Whatever your interests are, whatever skills you have and whatever time you have available there will be an opportunity for you to contribute and make a difference.
We always need help monitoring reintroduced species and shorebirds; checking and maintaining traplines, helping in the nursery, checking the fence, administration, newsletter writing, education projects or just generally helping out.

If you want to join in contact a member of the committee or come along to one of our Sundays in the Park.

Be involved in improving the landscape.


TOSSI provides opportunities for everyone to be involved in this exceptional conservation project.

You’re invited to become a member of TOSSI.

Join and be involved in interesting activities.

Make a donation

Your donation will make a difference – it will help protect the plants and animals of Tāwharanui Open Sanctuary.
TOSSI is a community organisation with charitable status so all donations of $5 and over are tax deductible.


On the first Sunday of every month TOSSI runs activity days for Tāwharanui. Everyone is welcome to attend. Depending on the time of year there may be tree planting, walks, weeding, nursery work, talks on the Park or track maintenance.

During winter, “Sunday in the Park” concentrates on our major revegetation projects and may include “Saturday in the Park” as well!

Check Upcoming Events listings for details.

Tāwharanui Open Sanctuary does have a pest-proof fence, but it is essential to have traps throughout the park and outside of the perimeter to stop any unintended pest incursions.

Each month, trapline maintenance volunteers monitor possible predator activity along set trails and they maintain traps and bait stations.

Some trails are physically demanding, whereas others are literally a walk in the park.

Volunteers can opt to do trapline monitoring independently or with a buddy, at a time that best suits them.

There is training and regular updates to stay one step ahead of sneaky predators, such as cats, stoats and rats that look for ways into the regional park.

All trapping practices are conducted under Auckland Council Pest animal control guidelines for the Auckland region.

This is a vital role and will help New Zealand achieve its vision to be predator free by 2050.

If you are interested in volunteering please contact TOSSI

Tāwharanui Open Sanctuary has 2.5 kilometres of pest proof fencing that regularly needs checking and maintenance.

TOSSI volunteers work in pairs, one each side of the fence, checking the buried skirt, cap and netting.

They also check that surrounding culverts are clear to ensure heavy rainfall flows away from the fence line quickly to prevent potential flood damage.

Overhanging branches and close bush growth needs to be removed to stop predators using the foliage to scale the fence.

Work that can’t be completed by the fence checkers is recorded and followed up by other TOSSI volunteers – maybe during a Sunday in the Park Workday.

Fence checking at Tāwharanui is carried out on a roster that requires volunteers to be available once every 10 weeks.

There is full training and TOSSI volunteers learn how to record any observations. It is a great way to discover more about the regional park.

If you are interested in volunteering please contact TOSSI

Keeping track of the endangered birds that are in the guardianship of Tāwharanui Open Sanctuary is an important and rewarding role.

TOSSI volunteers support Auckland Council rangers by monitoring all bird species that are released into the park.

Volunteers use radio tracking, direct observation, and count night-time calls for kiwi.

As well as gaining an understanding of the progress of the endangered species, it is also important to check up on birds such as takahē that have large territories and are prone to hatching escape plans.

TOSSI volunteers also monitor shore birds such as tūturiwhatu/New Zealand dotterel and tōrea/variable oystercatcher to check on their annual breeding success.

If you are interested in volunteering please contact TOSSI

At 9am, every Thursday a group of TOSSI volunteers gets stuck into maintenance jobs throughout Tāwharanui.

The to-do list could include anything from assembling a tool shed, to developing a new track or repairing a farm gate.

This handy group of people is very industrious, and their work allows Auckland Council rangers to focus on other priorities throughout the regional park.

TOSSI maintenance volunteers are good problem solvers, with many having backgrounds in engineering, building and enthusiastic D.I.Y. 

If you are interested in volunteering please contact TOSSI

At 9am, every Tuesday a group of TOSSI volunteers meets at the plant nursery to care for thousands of native plants, in preparation for the three public planting days held in June, July and August.

The team collects all seed, seedlings and cuttings from native flora throughout Tāwharanui Open Sanctuary and uses the material to propagate more plants for native bush regeneration.

The nursery team has extensive knowledge about germinating difficult native seeds and the importance of tracking and tracing a plant’s heritage.

They are a friendly bunch and enjoy sharing their botanical knowledge – helping others learn how they could increase plantings of New Zealand native flora on their own properties.

Once seed is germinated, TOSSI volunteers pick out tiny seedlings and repot them into progressively larger bags, ensure irrigation systems are working and plan for the planting days.

The planting goal is to create an environment that fosters natural bush regeneration, as it would have been before people arrived at Tāwharanui Peninsula.

Many of the plants are food sources for the endangered birds at Tāwharanui.

If you are interested in volunteering please contact TOSSI

When time allows TOSSI volunteers take visitors for guided tours of Tāwharanui Open Sanctuary.

Tours could include kiwi spotting, identifying endangered shore birds such as tūturiwhatu (New Zealand dotterel) or pointing out rare flora hiding in the park.

The volunteers have extensive knowledge and they are dedicated to the protection and regeneration of New Zealand’s unique flora, fauna and marine biodiversity.

If you are interested in volunteering please contact TOSSI

Numerous groups visit Tāwharanui Open Sanctuary to learn more about the biodiversity being developed and protected at the park.

TOSSI volunteers support visits from Auckland Zoo, Scouts and Guides, schools and virtually any community group interested in learning more.

TOSSI has an impressive mobile 3-D diorama that demonstrates three distinct bird ecosystems at the park; wetlands, foreshore and forest.

Volunteers make the interactive diorama available for pre-arranged educational visits.

They also take it to Anchor Bay during the peak summer period for families, beach-goers and general park visitors to learn more about the different elements of Tāwharanui.

 If you are interested in volunteering please contact TOSSI

Beach visitors look at the info trailer

School visit

Businesses and community groups often pre-arrange to volunteer at Tāwharanui Open Sanctuary.

They help with big tasks that may need to be completed before planting days, such as placement of saplings throughout prepared fields before the masses arrive.

When people power is needed is it fabulous to have a community or corporate group give a hand for good at Tāwharanui.

Many businesses bring their staff members to public planting days, to build team morale and to give something back to the environment.

If you are interested in organising a group volunteering day please contact TOSSI

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