Brook fence gets another grant

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The pest-proof fence around the Brook Waimarama Sanctuary has been given another $150,000 from the government, it was announced today.

The money is coming from the Community Environment Fund and is to help Brook Waimarama Sanctuary Trust build a 14km pest-proof fence at the 700-hectare wildlife sanctuary, environment minister Nick Smith announced.

“I am hugely proud of the effort the community, councils and the trust have put into this project and am pleased the government is able to make a further contribution through the community environment fund,” he says.

In 2014, the Community Conservation Partnership Fund contributed $216,000 to the project. The Community Environment Fund contribution brings the Government’s support to $366,000.

Construction has started on the fence and is due to be finished by winter 2016.

Nick says the loss of biodiversity is New Zealand’s greatest environmental challenge. “We have more endangered native species than any other country and the biggest risk comes from pests like rats, mice, stoats and feral cats,” says Nick.

“This 700-hectare sanctuary will provide a safe haven for birds like the New Zealand falcon, yellow-crowned parakeet, weka and robins to not just survive but to breed. The project will protect over 250 species of native flora and fauna. An additional benefit, as experienced with sanctuaries like Zealandia in Wellington, is the return of native birds to Nelson’s neighbourhoods.

“I commend the efforts of the trust, whose aim is to provide an accessible and inspiring wildlife experience. Once complete, the sanctuary will offer people opportunities for education, training and practical involvement in safeguarding New Zealand’s natural heritage.

“Nelson has a strong reputation for environmental leadership. The government is pleased to be contributing to this project, which alongside Nelson’s stunning National Parks, will enhance the area’s brand as an eco-tourism mecca.”