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South Auckland Kauri And Other Native Trees

South Auckland Kauri And Other Native Trees "A Welcome Addition To Our Conservation Heritage".

Conservation Minister Sandra Lee says three coastal blocks of South Auckland Kauri and other native trees at Kawakawa Bay, purchased by the Nature Heritage Fund, are "a welcome addition to our conservation heritage."

"The three blocks totalling just over 350 hectares include the Boulder Brae kauri, which has a circumference of about seven metres, as well as other kauri-beech, taraire-tawa forest with scattered puriri, and tanekaha and kanuka vegetation," Ms Lee said.

"We are indebted to Glenis and Duncan Munro, to Jennifer and Keith Kelly, and to Ann and George Richardson for each allowing a block with high conservation values, which their families have cared for over the years, to be taken into public ownership for the benefit of all New Zealanders."

She said the Kelly block of 108 hectares and the Munro block of 227 hectares adjoin the Mataitai Forest Stewardship Area, resulting in a total protected area of about 700 hectares—a large area in Manukau City.

The Munro block is known locally as Whakatiri and contains two large Kauri, one of which is to be named the Luke Kauri and the other the Munro Kauri, in recognition of the donor families.

The Richardson Gift of 16.5 hectares will be known as the Richardson Scenic Reserve and is adjacent to the 52-hectare Te Morehu Scenic Reserve.

Ms Lee thanked the Manukau City Council for helping the crown acquire the land, and the Nature Heritage Fund which contributed more than $300,000 to make the transfers to public ownership a reality.

The Minister also paid a special tribute to former Auckland Conservator Stella Frances, for her stewardship during the period when the three coastal blocks were negotiated for and acquired.

She also presented the three families with certificates of appreciation today, to mark the transfer of the blocks which will all be administered as conservation land by the Department of Conservation.

"These three coastal blocks have been acquired in accordance with the New Zealand Biodiversity Strategy, which commits the Labour-Alliance coalition not only to halt biodiversity decline but also to restore and acquire high value areas and add them to New Zealand's conservation heritage," Ms Lee said.

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