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Mapping our ecosystems

Ecosystems Prioritisation

 Why do we need to prioritise ecosystem sites? There are three good reasons!

  1. We have 497,000 ha of indigenous ecosystems left in the region.  Even though this is only 20% of the original extent, it is a very large area to try to manage.
  2.  We aren't dealing with just one ecosystem type – there are 57 types of ecosystems present in the Hawke's Bay region including fens, bogs, braided rivers, frost flats, beech forest, podocarp forest and sand dunes.
  3. We need to decide on short to mid-term targets of where to put efforts in to deliver biodiversity outcomes.  Prioritising ecosystems is our guiding light!

Examples of different ecosystems are shown at right:  fen (type of wetland), red & mountain beech forest, braided river (Tukituki), bog (another type of wetland).

How do we do this?

To map our ecosystems we are using Zonation, a conservation planning software tool.  It helps us map and decide which ecosystems or habitat sites need work.  This decision is based on ecosystem types, the degree of loss (i.e., how much left), connectivity and, to some extent, condition.  Once these are mapped in a desktop exercise, we also go out and visit the sites to confirm what is there.

Zonation has helped us determine the top 30% priority terrestrial sites (see map below).

  • Zonation has identified 900 sites in the top 30% of the priority list
  • 529 sites are very small  ≤ 10 ha in size
  • This also analyses rivers and lakes as 10,034 segments of rivers and 77 lakes.  Most of the priority water bodies intersect with terrestrial sites.

Where to next?

A group of local experts are currently checking all these sites on desktop.   Once that is done, we will develop management prescriptions for some of the sites to get actions underway!Top30pc terrestrial w topo grey


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Contact us

027 231 9367

PO Box 246, Napier 4140

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