Quiet response to a big challenge 

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Taiea te Taiao. This is the Māori name of the Maungatautari to Pirongia Ecological Corridor Project.

The principal aim of the project, led by NZ Landcare Trust and funded principally by the Ministry for the Environment’s Freshwater Improvement Fund, is to link these two most significant landmarks of our region via an ecological corridor between the waterways of the Mangapiko and Ngaparierua Streams.

Interestingly, without a fanfare of self-promotion, the project is powerfully collaborative.

The Maungatautari to Pirongia Ecological Corridor Inc Soc is progressing the project alongside community groups: the Pirongia Te Aroaro o Kahu Restoration Society; the Maungatautari Ecological Island Trust; with local and regional councils: Waikato Regional Council and Waipā District Council; and mana whenua groupings: Ngāti Koroki-Kahukura Trust; Pūrekireki Marae; Te Rūnanga o Ngāti Apakura.  Individual landowners, local farmers, industry groups such as Fonterra, and other agencies such as QEII and Doc, are also working to improve and enhance riparian margins, create wetland habitat, and reduce predators to increase biodiversity in the region.

That collaboration includes invitations to other individuals and organisations who would like to support the project in enhancing water quality along the corridor, encouraging iconic native birds from the two mountains to spill out into the surrounding landscape and use habitat along the streams.  The habitat for indigenous bird-life, insects, etc, will be improved further with more native plantings and increased weed and pest control.  And practically anyone can get involved by joining with the many others already working to help the native fauna and flora of the district thrive.

We see much made globally about Climate Change, with strident calls for politicians and those in postions of power to do more in addressing the climate emergency.  Here we have but one example of an initiative quietly going about the task of responding locally to the global challenge.  There are many more.

Here also we see a prime example of a spirit of collaborative co-operation – co-governance of a shared concern and the co-creation of an enterprise which everyone ‘owns’, and no-one can not support.

Taiea te Taiao – mā Mangapiko, mai i Maungatautari ki Pirongia – ahu ake.

Acknowledging, celebrating the environment, via the Mangapiko, from Maungatautari to Pirongia – and beyond.

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