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Motu Kaikoura purchase great for Auckland


May 7, 2004 - Auckland

Motu Kaikoura purchase great for Auckland

Forest and Bird today welcomed the purchase of Motu Kaikoura (Kaikoura Island), announced by Conservation Minister Chris Carter. The purchase has been supported by the ASB Trust.

A campaign to purchase the island for the public and for conservation purposes has been underway for nearly a year. It is one of the largest remaining islands in the Hauraki Gulf that had remained completely in private ownership.

In early April, representatives from Forest and Bird's four Auckland branches recently visited the island to inspect it's potential for restoration, research, outdoor recreation and education.

"Motu Kaikoura is great asset for Auckland and the country. We thank the Government, the Auckland Regional Council and the local councils for all pitching in to support the purchase of the island," said Forest and Bird's Northern conservation officer, David Pattemore.

"Most people saw the need to secure this unique island through public ownership, rather than risk yet another inappropriate coastal development. Now Motu Kaikoura has a real chance to become another success story like Tiritiri Matangi," he said.

"The difference with Motu Kaikoura is that we have a chance to mix both ecological restoration and outdoor education," said Mr. Pattemore, "This is a very exciting approach that will be a magnificent asset for the Auckland community and for the rest of NZ."

"With an ever expanding population and rapidly increasing coastal land prices it was necessary to grab the opportunity when it came," said Mr. Pattemore, "There would not have been a second chance."

Forest and Bird's Deputy President and Waitakere Branch chair Dr Peter Maddison hoped that restoration work on Motu Kaikoura could be seen as a trial for restoration work on neighbouring Great Barrier Island.

ENDS


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