Doc funding boost for Otago projects
Monday 12th October, 2015
Several Otago conservation projects will receive a $334,000 financial boost from the Department of Conservation in the latest round of Community Conservation Partnership Fund grants.
Associate Conservation Minister Nicky Wagner announced yesterday the Landscape Connection Trust would receive $120,000 to help continue conservation efforts for threatened species and indigenous forests across 55,000ha of Otago land.
The trust planned to create a low-predator environment - a halo - in the areas surrounding the Orokonui ecosanctuary, she said.
''The 'Orokonui Halo' will help provide a safer habitat for threatened birds which fly over the sanctuary's fence, allowing the birds to nest in areas where people live.
''The trust will also work to restore indigenous coastal forests on public and private land as well as dry forest eco-systems in the Waikouaiti River catchment.''
Ms Wagner said the CCPF would also provide $111,000 to the Otago Peninsula Biodiversity Group to help reduce predators, including possums, rats and ferrets, on the Otago Peninsula.
The project was unique in New Zealand in attempting multi-species pest control in a rural-urban environment close to a major city, she said.
A further $103,000 would be given to Te Nohoaka o Tukiauau Sinclair Wetlands Trust to train skilled volunteers to maintain the wetland's ecosystem.
The Sinclair Wetland was established in 1960 by conservationist Horace Sinclair, who was awarded an MBE for services to conservation in 1984.
More than 60 species of bird live or regularly visit the wetland, which is now owned by Ngai Tahu.
Ms Wagner said the CCPF enabled community-led conservation growth and worked hand in hand with funding from community and private organisations to achieve better conservation outcomes.
''The CCPF is enabling the Department of Conservation to work with conservationists at a local level to support some incredibly valuable projects.
''Many of these Otago projects are already making a real difference and this support will help to build on their success,'' Ms Wagner said.