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Minister launches fundraiser for pest-proof fence

Minister launches fundraiser for pest-proof fence

Conservation Minister Dr Nick Smith tonight launched a fundraising campaign to help create a wildlife sanctuary in a former council water reserve in Nelson’s Brook Valley.

“The sanctuary is a community-led initiative to create a safe haven for endangered birdlife including the New Zealand falcon, yellow-crowned parakeets, weka and robins. The pest-free environment will also benefit the more than 250 species of native flora and fauna, including mature beech forest and occasional huge podocarps,” Dr Smith said.

“The Brook Waimarama Sanctuary Trust has made admirable progress over the past decade in raising around two-thirds of the $4.7 million it needs to build the 14-kilometre fence around the 700-hectare site. I hope this round of fundraising, where people can sponsor fence posts, will help get the trust over the line and the fence built.

“The project is an exciting example of independent community-led conservation, which has an increasingly important role to play in preserving our natural heritage.

“The environmental benefit of this sanctuary is that it will enable native birds to again be seen in Nelson gardens that have been absent for decades. It will also provide an economic benefit for our tourism industry by giving visitors an opportunity to see our own special birds in their natural setting rather than in a zoo.

“This sanctuary reinforces Nelson’s proud heritage in environmental leadership.

I will be doing all I can as both Conservation Minister and Nelson’s MP to ensure it achieves its ambitious goals.”


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