Video | Business Headlines | Internet | Science | Scientific Ethics | Technology | Search


New Zealand’s first marine reserve turns 30

23 February 2006

New Zealand’s first marine reserve turns 30

The Department of Conservation is celebrating thirty years of New Zealand’s first marine reserve at Goat Island near Leigh during Sea Week.

In the thirty years since the Cape Rodney-Okakari Point Marine Reserve (known as Goat Island marine reserve) was created its sea life has flourished and become a major attraction for the public.

Department of Conservation community relations officer Liz Maire said the marine reserve had become an important place for people to experience marine life in a natural setting.

“We get up to 4000 people a day at the height of summer and they all come for a close encounter with the fish and other marine life.”

Each year more than 300,000 people visit this five-kilometre stretch of coast to view the abundant fish and sea life in the reserve. In 2003 the Rodney Economic Development Trust estimated the marine reserve pumped $12 million into the local economy.

Monitoring has shown that barren areas eaten out by sea urchins has been replaced by seaweed due to increases in snapper and rock lobster, which eat the urchins. Legal-sized snapper are about 13 times more plentiful in the marine reserve than outside and are also 10-centimetres larger. Rock lobster, blue cod, silver drummer and butterfish are also more numerous.

Ms Maire said DOC was celebrating the marine reserve’s third decade with a beach adventure day on Saturday 11 March during Sea Week. “We hope people will come and join in the free activities at the beach and discover what an amazing place this is.”

You can explore the rocks and rock pools in a guided tour with marine experts Tony and Jenny Enderby on the hour from 11am to 2 pm. Learn how to tell a half crab from a chiton and to spot an octopus. They will also be giving tips on snorkelling and what to look out for in the water. Bookings are essential through the DOC Warkworth Office. Discounted trips on the Glass Bottom Boat will also be available.

The Cape Rodney-Okakari Marine Reserve was established in 1975. The 500-hectare area extends out 800 metres around Goat Island, named after the goats seafarers left there as a food source more than 100 years ago. New Zealand now has 27 marine reserves which make up about seven percent of our territorial sea.

Sea Week (5-12 March) aims to raise awareness about our unique marine environment. The theme this year is “One Ocean – Te moana takutahi”.


© Scoop Media

Business Headlines | Sci-Tech Headlines


Superu Report: Land Regulation Drives Auckland House Prices

Land use regulation is responsible for up to 56 per cent of the cost of an average house in Auckland according to a new research report quantifying the impact of land use regulations, Finance Minister Steven Joyce says. More>>


Fletcher Whittled: Fletcher Dumps Adamson In Face Of Dissatisfaction

Fletcher Building has taken the unusual step of dumping its chief executive, Mark Adamson, as the company slashed its full-year earnings guidance and flagged an impairment against Australian assets. More>>


No More Dog Docking: New Animal Welfare Regulations Progressed

“These 46 regulations include stock transport, farm husbandry, companion and working animals, pigs, layer hens and the way animals are accounted for in research, testing and teaching.” More>>


Employment: Most Kiwifruit Contractors Breaking Law

A Labour Inspectorate operation targeting the kiwifruit industry in Bay of Plenty has found the majority of labour hire contractors are breaching their obligations as employers. More>>


'Work Experience': Welfare Group Opposes The Warehouse Workfare

“This programme is about exploiting unemployed youth, not teaching them skills. The government are subsidising the Warehouse in the name of reducing benefit dependency,” says Vanessa Cole, spokesperson for Auckland Action Against Poverty. More>>


Internet Taxes: Labour To Target $600M In Unpaid Taxes From Multinationals

The Labour Party would target multinationals operating in New Zealand to ensure they don't avoid paying tax if it wins power and is targeting $600 million over three years through a "diverted profits tax," says leader Andrew Little. More>>