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Protecting Manukau's heritage - it's only natural

3 August 2005

Protecting Manukau's heritage - it's only natural

As part of its parks strategy, 'Making Connections', Manukau City Council is developing conservation plans for a number of its nature reserves to protect and restore the city's natural heritage.

Manukau has over 400 individual nature reserves totalling more than 2,000 hectares - that's over 7,100 rugby pitches.

The plans are to be developed for 84 of these reserves, chosen from parks where ecology and recreation, rather than sports, are the focus, and where there is greatest potential for nature conservation.

The 84 reserves cover approximately one quarter of Manukau's park land (474 hectares). They range in size from 0.15 hectares to 73.5 hectares and include areas of regionally significant coastal and lowland native forest, scrub and wetland.

The conservation plans will set out and prioritise actions to protect and enhance the reserves. Measures may include restoration of riverbanks, weed and pest control and development of formal track and trail networks. The plans also aim to increase the public's appreciation and understanding of Manukau's natural heritage.

The Council is calling on the community to get involved and a series of community discussion groups will take place in August 2005:

Date Time Venue 16 August 05 7pm Old School Hall, Flatbush Road, Flatbush, 23 August 05 7pm Manukau Room, Civic Centre, Wiri Station Road, City Centre 25 August 05 7pm Pakuranga Community Room, Aylesbury Avenue, Pakuranga

Ecologists will be on hand to answer questions. Community groups will be able to share their thoughts and ideas about what they would like to see in the city's nature reserves and how they can be involved in future conservation programmes.

The sessions are open to everyone. If residents cannot make it to the discussion groups, they are invited to make submissions by collecting a submission form at Council's Customer Centre at Kotuku House or downloading a form from the Council's website (http://www.manukau.govt.nz/natural-heritage.htm), where a list of sites and maps of the 84 chosen nature reserves are also posted.

ENDS

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