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Otago Fish & Game look to fund wetland restoration

Otago Fish & Game look to fund wetland restoration

A recent spike in non-compliance over the holiday period has created more opportunities for Otago Fish & Game to fund new habitat projects.

Established in 2011 with the aim of encouraging landowners to create or improve existing wetlands, the Habitat Enhancement Fund is provided by reparation monies received from those caught hunting or fishing without a licence across the Otago region.

“We (Otago Fish & Game) believe this utilizes reparation funding in a transparent way with clear benefits to licence holders as well as the general community” stated Morgan Trotter; Otago Fish & Game field officer charged with managing the habitat enhancement programme.

Applicants may seek grants of up to $1500 towards planting, fencing and construction costs. Priority projects most likely to receive funding include the creation and protection of significant areas of open water, and shallow wetlands that provide waterfowl breeding habitat.

Successful applicants are asked to sign a Habitat Construction Agreement stating that works will be completed within 18 months and funds are paid directly to the landowner on completion of the project.

“Fish & Game are actively involved in protecting wetlands and waterways and the fund has proved popular with licence and private land holders alike.” added Morgan Trotter.

“These projects will not only help to provide game bird hunting opportunities across the Otago region but will potentially have wider environmental benefits associated with the creation and enhancement of wetlands.”

Please note: Saturday, February 2nd is World Wetland Day; this year’s theme is ‘Wetlands take care of water’.

ENDS

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