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Botanist wins NZ’s premier conservation award

Hon Steve Chadwick
Minister of Conservation

15 July 2008 Media Release
Botanist wins NZ’s premier conservation award

Nelson botanist and conservationist Shannel Courtney will be awarded one of New Zealand’s oldest conservation awards recognising his outstanding contribution to the conservation of our native plants, Steve Chadwick said today.

Steve Chadwick today announced that Shannel Courtney is the 2008 recipient of New Zealand’s premier conservation award, the Loder Cup. The Loder Cup was donated by English botanist Gerald Loder, in 1926, to honour those who worked to ‘retain, investigate and cherish New Zealand’s incomparable flora’.

“This award recognises Shannel’s personal and professional commitment to protecting and restoring threatened indigenous plant life, particularly in the Nelson and Marlborough regions,” Steve Chadwick said.

“Shannel was nominated by the Forest and Bird Society and it is clear that he is highly respected by his colleagues as a leader in his field. Those supporting Shannel’s nomination highlighted his ongoing support to others in plant conservation and botanical research.”

Steve Chadwick said the Loder Cup celebrated Shannel’s conservation achievements, including work creating a full range of species lists covering the majority of the two million hectares of national parks, reserves and other public conservation land at the top of the South Island.

“Shannel is also recognised for devoting his spare time to promoting, restoring and protecting our native plants, including work restoring six hectares of coastal northern rata-podocarp-mixed broadleaved forest on limestone bluffs at Pohara in Golden Bay. This is a wonderful example of the difference individuals can make in restoring natural environments on private land.

“Shannel’s knowledge of the distribution and habitats of all New Zealand indigenous plants, especially threatened species, has made a huge contribution to conservation in New Zealand, and I congratulate and thank him as he joins other worthy recipients of this premier conservation award.”

The Loder Cup will be presented to Shannel Courtney in a special ceremony during Conservation Week, 7-14 September 2008. For more information, visit www.doc.govt.nz


ENDS

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