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Successful golf course kiwi release

Successful golf course kiwi release

DOC kiwi handler Jeremy Guillotell with the kiwi before release.

Two central North Island conservation projects are financially better off following the 14th annual NZPGA Senior Charity Championship held recently at the Wairakei Golf + Sanctuary.

The three-day NZPGA event and auction helped raise $60,000 which has been split evenly between Project Tongariro and the NZ Men’s Health Trust.

Auctioneer John Hart encouraged golfers to bid generously for a range of exclusive experiences on offer including some unique conservation adventures.

In addition, the event saw the release of another kiwi into the Wairakei Golf + Sanctuary. The 180 hectare pest-free property has been home to several juvenile kiwi over the last 12 months where they live until they are a safe weight, around 1kg, at which time they are released back into their native habitat.

Project Tongariro will use the funds to assist two of its flagship conservation projects that they manage in partnership with the Department of Conservation.

Restoring Rotopounamu, which aims to restore 600 hectares of native bush in Tongariro National Park is a showcase campaign for Project Tongariro and DOC. Now in its tenth year, the project is showing astonishing results.

“Over the last ten years, we’ve primarily concentrated on reducing the numbers of rodent pests in the area” says Project Tongariro president, Paul Green. “Now there is evidence of an abundance of native bird life back in the bush.”

“We are most grateful to Gary Lane and proud to be a recipient of their fundraising event. The success at Rotopounamu shows what can be accomplished with time and adequate resources.”

A new project, Greening Taupō, is about to be launched and will also benefit from Wairakei Golf + Sanctuary’s generosity. Project Tongariro is leading the campaign to extend the conservation efforts at Wairakei Golf + Sanctuary beyond the pest-proof fence and into the surrounding community. Greening Taupo hopes to see the Taupo community planting at least 250,000 plants in and around the area within five years.


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