Saturday, July 20, 2024

Whitebait conservation group nets funding

Mountains to Sea Conservation Trust are set to significantly scale up their work protecting īnanga spawning habitat in Northland thanks to funding from Jobs for Nature, Environment Minister, David Parker announced today.

“Īnanga numbers are declining. It’s important that we restore their home and protect them,” Mr Parker said.

Together with the project partners, he said Mountains to Sea Conservation Trust will focus on locating īnanga and protecting and enhancing their spawning habitat across 25 waterways in the far North.

“The project gives effect to Te Mana o Te Wai, the principal concept of the Essential Freshwater reforms, by putting the health of the freshwater and its inhabitants first.”

“In practice this means supporting freshwater quality by eradicating pests, planting to enrich and protect waterways, and our native freshwater species,” the Minister said.

Over the next 3.5 years, the project will receive $1 million funding from Jobs for Nature, with 18.3 full time equivalent roles to do the work and 24 people undertake formal training.

The project will enable 19,400 stream side plantings and fencing to be installed along four kilometres of waterways as well as animal and plant pest control.

“This will help to fill knowledge gaps and increase effective management of freshwater and riparian habitats for the protection of this declining taonga species,” said Poutokomanawa/Co-Director – Freshwater Lead of the Mountains to Sea Conservation Trusts, Kim Jones.

The Northland Īnanga Spawning Habitat Restoration Project will also collect mapping data to identify priority habitat for restoration, which will help to build climate change resilience.

This funding comes from the Freshwater Improvement fund, which is part of the Government’s Jobs for Nature package. Jobs for Nature aims to benefit our environment and provide employment opportunities to help accelerate the recovery from the impacts of COVID-19.

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