Department of Conservation Media Release, September 17, 2020.
New Zealand’s goal of 100,000 kiwi by 2030 is being helped by an extra $19.7 million in funding to accelerate iwi and community efforts to protect kiwi, Minister of Conservation Eugenie Sage announced.
“$19.7 million of Jobs for Nature funding is being invested in kiwi conservation activities including increased predator control, more dogs trained in kiwi avoidance, and the successful Operation Nest Egg programme,” said Eugenie Sage at the National Kiwi Hui in Queenstown.
“Work by iwi and community organisations such as Kiwis for kiwi, alongside private landholders and institutions has been essential in protecting kiwi in the wild and in increasing their local kiwi populations. The funding will benefit their work with kiwi”
The charitable trust Kiwis for kiwi is working with the Department of Conservation to manage the funding. Projects all over New Zealand have been invited to apply. Kiwis for kiwi along with other specialist kiwi practitioners will assess applications.
“The funding should enabling a scaling up of community kiwi restoration projects and create more predator-free land for kiwi,” said Eugenie Sage
“Only when large area are predator free will we see kiwi numbers go from 2% decline per year to the Kiwi Recovery Plan’s goal of a 100,000 kiwis by 2030.”
The Forest Bridge Trust’s kiwi restoration project is one project that will benefit from the investment.
“Building on the work of local communities and private landowners such as iwi and farmers, the Forest Bridge Trust will use $8.5 million of the new $19.7 million in funding to create a 54,000 hectare predator-free corridor across Northland between the Kaipara Harbour and the Pacific Ocean, to be made safer for kiwi.
“Funding from Jobs for Nature will help to speed up the work that the Forest Bridge Trust is doing and create at least 40 new jobs at the peak of the project to support it.”
The new kiwi conservation funding covers five years. At its peak is likely to create up to 100 new jobs for community and Iwi conservation projects including field operation, project management and administrative roles.
Funding focuses on large-scale predator control projects across Aotearoa New Zealand that increase habitat available for kiwi and involve iwi, hapū and private landowners.