Let's visit the Inlet



If you're planning to take your class to visit the Pāuatahanui Inlet, this section offers you a choice of 11 activity sheets to download as PDFs. From these, you can put together a group of activities to suit your focus and class level. The worksheets have been designed to develop students' scientific knowledge and understanding of the environmental importance of the Inlet.

We have deliberately not labelled the worksheets for any particular class level, although it will be clear to you that some activities will work better with senior classes. Most activities are stand-alone, but we hope you will find they provide opportunities for further classroom work, for example in language, maths, art and music.

We would be very happy to hear how teachers have used and extended the worksheets. We would like to give you a means of sharing any Inlet-related activities you develop.

We also hope parents will use these worksheets on family visits to the Inlet. 

Acknowledgements - Photo: Gabrielle Pascoe



Click on the activities you want for your visit, to download and print them. You may wish to laminate your worksheets, so you can use them again with other students. To help you with your choice, the activity sheets are individually described here.


1. On the map



5. Make a soundscape



9. Be a writer for the day


2. Watching the tides



6. Looking for letters



10 Birdwatching


3. Shapes on the shore



7. Scavenger hunt



11. Be a careful watcher


4. Animal tracks on the shore



8. Comparing shellfish of the mudflats


These worksheets are also available as Word docs:
1. On the map; 2. Watching the tides; 3, Shapes on the shore; 4. Animal tracks on the shore; 5. Make a soundscape; 6. Looking for letters; 7. Scavenger hunt; 8. Comparing shellfish of the mudflats; 9. Be a writer for the day; 10. Birdwatching; 11. Be a careful watcher

You will find a great deal of information about the Inlet on other pages of our website. Take time to explore the various sections.




Get your class to construct a 'Conservation Code' for the Inlet. Encourage them to think about how they can protect the animals and plants of the Inlet durng their visit. You may then like to talk about the conservation code at right.

Consult the tide times: if you want to see mudflat life and bird feeding, it's best to visit near low tide.


Choose where you want to go.


  • For bird life: Wildlife Reserve bird hides for water fowl and stilts; edge of the salt-marsh vegetation to the west of the Wildlife Reserve and the east of Motukarka Point for wading birds; the shore between Duck Creek and the Wildlife Reserve for shags; western end of the Inlet for gulls.


  • For cockles and mud snails: Mana foreshore, parts of Browns Bay, southern and eastern sides of Motukaraka Point.


  • For mud crabs: Both sides of Motukaraka Point; the bay to the west of the point and around Ration Point; parts of Browns Bay.


Remember to take rubbish bags. For some activities, you will also need containers, hammers, poles, rulers, coloured pencils, and newsprint sheets to collate data from different groups. Cameras will enhance many of the activities. Clipboards will make it easier for your students to manage their activity sheets.


As usual for outdoor activities, remember sunblock, hats, warm clothing, gumboots or old shoes, and first aid equipment.


There are toilets at the north end of Paremata Bridge; near the water ski club building; by Lighthouse Pāuatahanui; at Motukaraka Point.



Conservation code for Pāuatahanui Inlet


  • Disturb animals and plants as little as possible.

  • Walk around, not over, communities of salt marsh plants, especially the mat-forming plants.

  • If you collect plant material for identification, take the smallest possible amount of one specimen only. You must not remove plants from the Wildlife Reserve.

  • If you move an animal, put it back exactly where it was as soon as you can. If you turn over a stone or disturb an animal's shelter, carefully put it back exactly how it was before you leave.

  • If you put an animal in a container so you can study it more closely, make sure you also put in some of its environment (water, mud, stones, etc), and put the animal back as soon as you have finished studying it.

  • 'Take away litter and photos and leave only footprints.' This means take away all your rubbish, but don't take anything else away from the Inlet.









Last Updated: 25/02/2017 11:14pm