Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | News Video | Crime | Employers | Housing | Immigration | Legal | Local Govt. | Maori | Welfare | Unions | Youth | Search


Lull In Forest Seeding After Last Year’s Mast

Department of Conservation (DOC) monitoring shows New Zealand’s forests are having a lull in seeding after last year’s mega mast, which will lead to fewer predators in some areas.

Beech and some other forest trees seed every 2-6 years in what is known as a mast. The mass seeding feeds our native species but also fuels a rodent boom and upsurge in stoats, which has devasting impacts on our native wildlife if not controlled.

DOC uses climate modelling to predict forest masts a year ahead, then monitors the following summer to check if seed is present. Along with predator monitoring, this information is important for predator control planning.

Recent seed sampling results confirm there is no significant beech forest mast this year, as forecast, says DOC Principal Science Advisor Graeme Elliott.

“We finished seed sampling in March before the COVID-19 lockdown and results show there is little or no beech seed across the South Island and only a moderate mast at several North Island sites.

“Rimu sampling also showed very little ripe fruit and new tips indicating no rimu mast this year or next.”

DOC’s latest modelling using climate data from the past two summers also indicates there will be no major beech mast in 2021.

“After the massive beech and rimu mast last year, our forests are conserving resources and taking a break from widespread seeding. This means we’re likely to see fewer rats and stoats in many areas and can refocus our predator control plans accordingly,” says Graeme Elliott.

DOC’s seed sampling involved snipping branches by helicopter from beech and rimu trees at selected sites throughout the country. More than 1100 beech trees and 600 rimu trees were sampled at 46 sites. Only sites in the Kaimanawa and Kaweka forest parks showed moderate seed present.

NIWA provides DOC with data from its virtual climate station network and this is used in the Delta-T model to predict beech masts, which appear to be triggered by a significant temperature increase between consecutive summers.

Modelling predicts seeding is unlikely in most of New Zealand’s beech forests in 2021 except in the northern tip of the South Island and north of Lake Wakatipu in Otago where some seeding is possible.

With no major forest mast occurring this year, DOC is planning its Tiakina Ngā Manu predator control programme over about 550,000 ha of conservation land, which will include North Island areas that missed out on predator control in last year’s largely South Island mast response programme.

The national programme is focussed on protecting the most at-risk populations of native species such as kōkako, kiwi, kākā, kea, whio/blue duck, kākāriki karaka/orange-fronted parakeet, mohua/yellowhead, tuke/rock wren, long and short tailed bats/pekapeka, frogs/pepeketua and giant land snails. It is also aimed at protecting native forests from the impact of possums.

© Scoop Media

Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Gordon Campbell: On The Twitter Wars, And The Muller Muddles

Whatever the failings of our own politicians, spare a kind thought for the majority of Americans who did not vote for Donald Trump. Sure, it was depressing this week to watch Todd Muller clinging for dear life to his talking points on Q&A, lest he be carried away in the slavering jaws of Jack Tame…. but this was mere incompetence, not malice. At the same time the President of the United States was (a) falsely accusing one of his media critics of murder, and (b) threatening to shut down Twitter for attaching a warning label to Trump’s attempt at poisoning the electoral process by falsely claiming that postal voting has led to extensive voter fraud... More>>


Government: Freshwater Package Backed By Comprehensive Economic Analysis

Decisions on the Action for Healthy Waterways package are supported by comprehensive environmental and economic impact analysis by leading New Zealand research institutes, universities, and private sector firms. More>>


National: "Todd Muller Announces Shape Of Next Government"

National Party Leader Todd Muller has announced the line-up of the next Government. “New Zealand is facing perhaps the toughest time that almost anyone alive can remember. “We are borrowing tens of billions of dollars to get us through this crisis. There ... More>>


Lockdown Rules: Timeline For Moving To Level 1 Needed

The BusinessNZ Network is calling for more clarity about the conditions under which businesses can move to Covid level 1. The network is concerned about large numbers of businesses that are at risk of closure if restrictions continue at the current ... More>>

Gordon Campbell: On National’s Day Of Reckoning

Congratulations. You are one of the 55 members of the National caucus being called together tomorrow to choose who will lead you to either (a) catastrophic or (b) honourable defeat on September 19, thereby saving some (but not all) of the jobs currently on the line. Good luck. Your decision process starts NOW... More>>


Budget 2020: Jobs Budget To Get Economy Moving Again

Investments to both save and create jobs in Budget 2020 mean unemployment can be back to pre COVID-19 levels within two years and could see the economy growing again as early as next year. More>>


Covid-19 Response: Law Setting Up Legal Framework For Covid-19 Alert Level 2 Passes

The law establishing a legal framework for the response to Covid-19 has passed its final reading and will become law in time for the move to Alert Level 2 tonight.
This is a bespoke Act designed specifically to stop the spread of COVID-19... More>>


Trans-Tasman Bubble: PMs Jacinda And Morrison Announce Plans

Australia and New Zealand are committed to introducing a trans-Tasman COVID-safe travel zone as soon as it is safe to do so, Prime Minister Rt Hon Jacinda Ardern and Prime Minister the Hon Scott Morrison MP have announced... More>>


Government: Support For Arts And Music Sector Recovery

A jobseekers programme for the creative sector and four new funds have been set up by the Government to help our arts and music industry recover from the blow of COVID-19. Thousands of jobs will be supported through today’s $175 million package ... More>>


Government: New Zealand Joins Global Search For COVID-19 Vaccine

Foreign Affairs Minister Winston Peters, Research, Science and Innovation Minister Megan Woods, and Health Minister David Clark today announced a COVID-19 vaccine strategy, which will enable New Zealand scientists to contribute to global research efforts ... More>>


The Dig: Steady State Economics: We’ve Got Some (systems) Thinking To Do

In this time of impending economic and ecological crises, we urgently need to aim for a sustainable or ‘steady state’ economy. In order to get there, we will need to adopt a ‘systems-thinking’ outlook taking into account the interconnections of our complex world.

In short, we’ve got some systems thinking to do... More>>


Election 2020: Parties Get Into gear

The Green Party is pleased to reveal its candidate list for the upcoming election. With a mix of familiar faces and fresh new talent, this exceptional group of candidates are ready to lead the Greens back into Government. Using the most democratic list ... More>>


Insight Into Regenerative Agriculture In New Zealand

There is a fast growing movement in New Zealand that has been happening out in paddocks, fields, gardens and hill country across the nation. It is a movement that holds the promise to reshape our productive land use industries towards systems that work with the natural environment to regenerate the land. The movement is that of regenerative agriculture. More>>


Covid-19: Tracer App Released To Support Contact Tracing

The Ministry of Health has today formally released the NZ COVID Tracer app to support contact tracing in New Zealand. Kiwis who download the app will create a digital diary of the places they visit by scanning QR codes displayed at the entrances to ... More>>


Govt: Deep Concern At Hong Kong National Security Legislation
Foreign Affairs Minister Winston Peters today reiterated the deep concern of the New Zealand Government following confirmation by China’s National People’s Congress of national security legislation relating to Hong Kong.... More>>






InfoPages News Channels