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Collaborative Efforts Revitalise Indigenous Habitat

In an inspiring display of partnership and environmental stewardship, the Ōmataroa Rangitāiki No.2 Trust, Bay of Plenty Regional Council, Ngā Whenua Rāhui, and Rayonier Matariki Forests have joined forces to restore vital indigenous wetland and forest habitats in Te Repo o Ngākauroa reserve and Puhikōkō reserve, located in the Ōmataroa forest of the Eastern Bay of Plenty. The primary goal of this collaborative endeavour is to provide a safe haven for threatened and at-risk species, particularly the New Zealand Northern Kiwi, Pītoitoi (North Island Robin), Tititi Pounamu (North Island Rifleman), Koekoeā (Whitehead Long-tailed Cuckoo), New Zealand Kārearea (Falcon), Kākā, Giant Kōkopu, Spotless Crake, and Mātātā (Fernbird).

On Wednesday, June 14th, a significant milestone was reached as 1000 native plants were planted during a restoration planting event. Led by Ian Tarei and his dedicated team from Omataroa Kaitiaki Limited – along with Tom Harding, Land Management Officer at Bay of Plenty Regional Council – the efforts were further bolstered by the participation of year 7 and 8 students from Te Kura o Te Teko. These young students were part of the Texas Rangers programme, a six-week Kiwi conservation and biodiversity outdoor education initiative.

Chairman Charlie Elliott of the Ōmataroa Rangitāiki No.2 Trust expressed his gratitude for the collective commitment and hard work displayed during this restoration project. He stated, "We are thrilled to see the Ōmataroa community, local organisations, and our young generation coming together to protect our precious native species and restore their habitats. This collaboration sets a remarkable example for all of us to follow in preserving the natural heritage of our region."

The combined efforts of Ōmataroa Rangitāiki No.2 Trust, Bay of Plenty Regional Council, Ngā Whenua Rāhui, Rayonier Matariki Forests, Omataroa Kaitiaki Limited, and the enthusiastic students have brought us one step closer to safeguarding the future of these endangered and vulnerable species. This ongoing partnership serves as a testament to the power of collective action and the vital role each individual can play in conserving our unique natural environment.

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