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Learn about Marine Reserves

 WSR2018Resources to learn more about New Zealand's marine reserve network.

The late Dr Bill Ballantine was a marine conservation legend, and was influential in the establishment of New Zealand’s first marine reserve at Goat Island, Leigh. Bill wrote educational material that clearly outlines the principals of marine reserves.


Advertise with us

 D8A0416An opportunity to promote and advertise your business, while supporting Experiencing Marine Reserves (EMR) at the same time!

EMR is a programme of the non-profit charitable Mountains to Sea Conservation Trust. EMR provides quality first-hand marine education experiences and initiatives to schools and communities, through our programmes in schools and our community guided snorkelling events. The aim of the EMR programme is to raise awareness, understanding and involvement in marine conservation.

EMR Alumni - where to next?

EMR Alumni ideas

So you have participated in EMR throughout your primary or tertiary years - where to next?

Here are some of our ideas for organisations to get involved with and participate in longer term action projects

BLAKE has a range of inspirational opportunities for young people, starting with their Blake inspire programme that could lead to opportunities with Blake expeditions. EMR has been lucky to partner with them during two expeditions to the Kermadecs.

Are you keen to get marine conservation happening in your area? Check out our How to create a marine reserve proposal website
Are you into underwater photography? Contribute your observations to

Do you love marine mammals? Why not take a marine mammal medic course so that you can respond to whale stranding around Aotearoa

Are you passionate about protecting your local marine reserve? See what you can do to assist in the management of the reserve, contact your local DOC office to find out contacts for the management committee. Maybe you could help initiate stealth cam monitoring of your local marine reserve?

Do you love taking people snorkelling? Become a EMR volunteer

Do you want other schools to participate in the same experience as you? Pay it forward- help to find funding to support local schools participation in EMR.

Become a member of EMR

Would you like to support marine conservation projects and see long term monitoring of crayfish? Raise funds for the priorities of the Dr Roger Grace memorial fund

Contribute to international youth voice for the oceans by becoming a member of the Youth Advisory Council (a member of the 2019 is actually an EMR/BLAKE alumni from our trip with BLAKE expeditions to the Kermadec Islands!)


Our code of care for the Sea

getting ready small websiteHow can you help the marine environment?

  • Get connected with the marine environment - go snorkelling with your whanau!
  • Experience a marine reserve!
  • Support our marine reserves - spread the word in your community!

Volunteering Opportunities

ryan mahurangiExperiencing Marine Reserves runs a series of free snorkel days in the weekends which we need volunteer guides for as well as volunteers for our school events. We provide your training and for the community days we usually assist with transport costs as well as providing lunch. 

In the Auckland Region we are providing a number of training opportunities  - register to find out more.


If you are interested in volunteering please register here:


(If you are a Auckland based volunteer please sign up to our Auckland volunteer mailer in addition to registering above, in order to recieve the latest volunteer opportunities) 


Coromandel - Email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. 


Gisborne - Email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Wellington - Visit their website

Nelson - Email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. 


Rakiura - Stewart Island - email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. 


 2019.05.18 PKSnorkelDay LD 03290


Volunteer Resources

All volunteers must complete this quiz:

pdfVolunteer_training_PRESENTATION_-_2019-20.pdf4.11 MB


pdfEMR_snorkel_Supervisor.pdf74.46 KB

pdfEmergency_Response_Flow_Chart.pdf66.32 KB

pdfFish_Identification_Chart.pdf1.1 MB

pdfSOP_quick_reference_2021.pdf113.5 KB

pdfSMP_MTSCT_v10_2021_final_1.pdf2.13 MB

pdfKarakia_for_MTSCT_Programme_delivery.pdf290.35 KB

pdfBites_Stings.pdf174.44 KB

pdfGlossary-of-Maori-Words-Relating-to-the-Sea.pdf47.44 KB

pngMangrove_resource.png7.8 MB


bsbf 70Department of Conservation 75dive tut 75fn logo 100Tindall Foundation 75wettie 120 WSNZ logo RGB small



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