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Rare Wairarapa forest protected for all to enjoy

Hon Dr Nick Smith
Minister of Conservation

31 January 2014

Rare Wairarapa forest protected for all to enjoy

Conservation Minister Dr Nick Smith today announced the Nature Heritage Fund has purchased of seven hectares of rare kahikatea forest on the Wairarapa Plains for $340,000.

“The giant trees that can be seen for miles on the Wairarapa Plains are now guaranteed for everyone to enjoy,” Dr Smith says.

“This area of forest known as Allen’s Bush is next to the 42-hectare Lowes Bush Scenic Reserve, which was purchased by the Fund in 2000. The latest purchase will see the nearby kahikatea forest also protected as a scenic reserve.

“Allen’s Bush is distinctive for the size of its trees, its maturity and ecological diversity. The forest is also home to a number of species uncommon elsewhere in the Wellington region, including a number of native birds, long-tailed bats, and koura and freshwater crayfish in the creeks and pools.

“The acquisition announced today completes the protection of the largest and most intact area of kahikatea swamp forest in the region. It will also enable more people to get involved in conservation through contributing to the on-going care of this valuable forest.”

The Nature Heritage Fund is a contestable ministerial fund established in 1990 to protect New Zealand’s indigenous ecosystems. To date, the fund has provided legal and physical protection to more than 340,000 hectares of natural areas.

ENDS

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