NZ wildlife and rivers focus of Innovation Award winners

NZ wildlife and rivers focus of Innovation Award winners

New Zealand has built a reputation for being clean, green and 100 percent pure, but unfortunately it's not an easy job to keep our environment squeaky clean.

So a bunch of talented Kiwis have created flash devices that mix nature and technology.

DroneCounts will allow conservationists to track tagged wildlife in terrain rougher than a backyard and in areas where hills are steep and bushes are thick. Having a device that hovers could be guardian angels for birds like kiwis.

Students from Victoria University tinkered around in a lab and came up with RiverWatch, which is riding the technological wave and looking to make a splash in very muddy waters.

"Sixty-five percent of our rivers are not swimmable, and it's a crime because when I grew up we could drink the water, not just swim in it, and we need to restore it," says Grant Muir.

It's a monitoring device that sends information to your smartphone. The device tests the water and gives you the temperature, PH, conductivity and tepidity.

"It's going to make a huge difference to New Zealand's water's because finally we will be able to test it and get reliable data and get sound decisions based not on guesswork or emotion but on sound scientific data," says Mr Muir.

The WWF Conservation Innovation Awards are taking place tonight in Wellington and Story went to meet the winners.

Watch the video for the full Story report.