DOC Community Engagement: Otago

Uploaded by DeptOfConservation on 18.09.2012

As Kiwis we've always loved our Great Outdoors. We've brought the black robin back from the
extinction, protected some of our iconic cultural heritage, and provided natural spaces for
everyone to enjoy.
But there's heaps left to be done. That's why the Department of Conservation needs your
help! We're looking for people just like you who can help us protect what makes New Zealand
Our environment groups at school is known as Sprouts!
Mitre 10 New Zealand is a proud sponsor of Takahe Rescue.
We sponsor the Jewel Gecko in Otago and Canterbury.
Wherever Yellow Eyed Penguin are found, that's where the Yellow Eyed Penguin Trust does its
There's all sorts of things we can do as custodians of the land.
Most definitely, you get a huge sense of satisfaction knowing that you have contributed.
Our aim is to double conservation in 20 years. It's an ambitious goal – and that's why
we need you to help make a difference!
I've been involved in conservation for as long as I remember. Here on Quarantine Island
I'm a caretaker along with my family and we do a lot of work around tree planting and
releasing. We've got quite a strong community here of people who come over and do work.
I'd hate for anything to change, for us to lose any of this beauty.
We're just on the edge of suburban Dunedin underneath the St Clair Golf Course, this
is an extraordinary place on the cliffs here is a colony of Fairy Prions. It's the only
place in the world where Fairy Prions are on the mainland. Because the cliffs are so
steep that the rats can't get to them.
Well this part of the project, actually getting the netting up, getting the fence just right
is all done by volunteers. I'm out here every weekend and we've got some people coming out
during the week. I really thrive working with volunteersbecause they are so keen, and they
will do things you can't pay people to do.
I think there is like a certain sense of comradery with all the other volunteers. You are all
pitching in together to do something. Normally you're all fairly like-minded people and pitching
otgether, so yeah that's one of the key things for me.
My main work with the community is the Wakatipu wild conifer contorl gropup. We have every
single land owner right around the lake all involved. They are all either putting in money
or time, resoruses to do wilding pine owrk on the land. We are supported by the local
council, the Department. The other part of the group is volunteers, we have, I forget
the exact figure, but something in the vicinity of three or four hundred people days per year.
So yeah major work for volunteers as well.
The yellow eyed penguin trust was established in 1987 and was the first single species charitable
trust in New Zealand. Over the years we have moved from a toally volunteer organisation
to an organisation employing 5 full time equivalent staff but still assisted in so many ways by
dozens and dozens of volunteers to allow us to achieve our conservation objectives.
I guess on a small scale, locally, there is an important relationship for the Department
and Iwi with Huriawa peninsula. Where as co-management is in place there. I think on a larger scale,
the return of the buff weka to Central Otago area is a big project that both iwi and the
Department have been involved in and continue to be. There is so many challenges in a conservation
sense for both parites that I think it is important that we do endavour to pull together.
We are an Enviro-school so we do want to pass on to kids that excitement for the natural
world, and where things come from and how things start and planting and watching things
grow and learning about plants and trees is all part of that. The older kids can guide
the younger ones and we get that information out there across the generation.
One of the rewarding parts of my job is that I sit on the Dunedin City Council's biodiversity
fund committee so I see all of these applications from farmers, from community groups, that
are really keen to protect a bit of bush or a particular species that they can see real
value in.
I looked into the stream one day and I saw some fish that I weren't sure what they were.
I talked with the man from Fish and Game and he identified them as the Giant Kokopu. Well
I think the special thing for me is that they were here before the trout, and the fact that
they were native. They need grass and they need plant life growing out on the edge of
the water and if we let the cattle do their thing then that reduces the amount of available
grass for that.
Well the fence has started if you look over to our right we are bout 2 kilometres down
that way, back to another kilometre or so behind me. So we have a big area that we fenced
off with single wire fencing.
Orokunui Eco-sanctuary is a project which is trying to restore this whole cvalley above
Waitati it involves a fence thats almost 9 kilometres long. It's over 300 hectares. No
one has really operated on this scale in the South Island before. Well we are trying to
restore the forest and reintroduce a species that had been lost here for a very long time.
We started with Kaka and we followed that up by sadllebacks, by South Island Robins,
by kiwi.
We operate in Aspiring National Park and on Lake Wanaka out to the nature reseves out
there, we do guided walks and we do nature tours effectively. Just having being involved
in the four years that we've been planting we have planted 1200 trees out there with
different projects, that is a win-win situation for the Department of COnservation, for us
as a company because we give people the opportunity to plant a tree they may have never planted
a tree before in their lives. They are giving back to New Zealand's environment, we leave
the island in a better condition with every trip and DOC knows thats it's being looked
after and being restocked with the original plants.
Air New Zealand has got two conservation projects we are involved with in the Otago region.
The first is the way in which we are supporting DOC with biodiversity projects in the Routeburn
Valley, and the second is habitat enhancement for little blue penguin on the Otago Peninsula.
For us 7 years ago as business owners we were a little bit reluctant to go into a partnership
with a government agency like DOC. But over the years we have been able to closely align
our brand and our business with the values of conservation in New Zealand.
It's really good for our staff, they feel like they're connected to this little animal
and we get out and do stuff in the field occasionally and that is really good for the team building.
DOC is a great parnter for Air New Zealand because it enables us to cover off two of
our key objectives. One they enable us to make a contribution to the environemnt through
our conservation programmes but they are also a big player in the tourism market and therefore
they are a logical partner for us.
We have got a very active mountain biking club here and they have started their own
sites, they have come to us with proposals for place like Seven Mile, and created a whole
series of tracks there. This year they came to us with the big idea of creating a whole
lot of single tracks on conservation land, private land, council land. We've really got
in behind that.
We've got a very special environment in New Zealand and we do really need to look after
Yeah I think we do feel like we are making a difference.
It's something good that you can do for everyone and for yourself.
That's why I get out and plant trees, because it is fun and rewarding.
Whether you're the kind of person who likes to think big, or muck in and get your hands
dirty, you can make a difference.
What's more, you'll be doing something that's fun - and healthy too!
So what are you waiting for! Let's get out there and make New Zealand the greatest living
space on earth!
(Te Reo Maori)