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Top 6 Actions

In August-September 2016, three special interest group meetings were held with tāngata whenua, statutory agencies and the conservation community.  At these meetings 38 outcomes and 33 actions were identified (Action Plan Appendix 2).  These were refined and prioritised to 6 immediate steps, which will make the most impact with least complexity and are the focus of the Action Plan 2017-20

Ecosystem mapping and ecological prioritisation underpins all the other priority actions, so has been started first.

There are four key steps to this priority action:

  • Mapping of 'potential' ecosystems to identify which are diminished and/or threatened and at greater accuracy than previously available.
  • Prioritising of indigenous ecosystem sites based on their ecological values, position in the landscape and site history using the ZONATION software.
  • Development of management prescriptions for each prioritised site, using local knowledge and specialist expertise.
  • Use this information for making decisions on where and when biodiversity projects are undertaken.

This action directly contributes to the goal under the NZ Biodiversity Strategy to maintain and restore a full range of remaining natural habitats and ecosystems; this in turn fulfills New Zealand's obligation under global frameworks, especially the Convention on Biological Diversity.

The Strategy has a key objective to recognise ' indigenous biodiversity as a taonga to be protected for future generations". 

Developing a cultural framework with tangata whenua is important to help identify, map and assess the condition of taonga (treasured) biodiversity sites using Mātauranga Māori values and tools.   Indigenous knowledge increases our understanding of habitats and species.

Key Steps:

  • Seek support from a Post Settlement Governance Entity to pilot the approach
  • Scope and secure funding
  • Wananga to gather information and agree on the cultural framework
  • Onsite condition assessments using Mātauranga Māori values and tools, using a consultant with local input and expert ecological advice
  • Collate the information and contribute to the HB Biodiversity Inventory
  • Integrate the taonga sites into funding priorities
  • Share the information.

Critical to the success of the 30+ year strategy is the need to have a means to directly engage with the community and to have oversight of the Strategy. These actions have been completed.

  • The Biodiversity Guardians are the 'owners' of the Strategy on behalf of the Hawke's Bay public. They were established in October 2017.  Guardians is an Incorporated Society, with a membership, a committee and an AGM.   They support the Biodiversity Forum and bring together the numerous groups and organisations with an interest in biodiversity.
  • The Biodiversity Foundation is a Charitable Trust, established in November 2017.  The Foundation's role is to grow and endowment towards the long-term goal of $50 million or more, as well as administering funding allocation rounds to support biodiversity restoration in Hawke's Bay.  The Trustees are appointed and includes the Chair of the Guardians.

The Strategy recognises that statutory agencies have an essential role in the delivery of biodiversity programmes - councils, government agencies, iwi organisations and non-government agencies.

They have a range of statutory responsibilities they must deliver and guaranteed funding streams.  This Priority Action also recognises that biodiversity is complex, involving technical and social changes, with multiple causes and stakeholders, and therefore collaboration and relationship-building is essential for solutions to be successful.  

The coordination between agencies will help speed up work in these areas:

  • Biosecurity
  • Conservation
  • Resource and policy planning
  • Land and catchment management
  • Research and science
  • Engineering
  • Communication and education.


Conservation is about people.  Biodiversity is everyone's responsibility and we already have so many people involved. But how to bring so many people who are involved to share ideas, learn new skills and work together?  Our solution is to hold a Biodiversity Forum once or twice a year.

The Forum is a central place where anyone and everyone involved or interested in biodiversity in Hawke's Bay can come together. It is a tool to educate and also to advocate for biodiversity.  It helps create opportunities for people to connect, coordinate and collaborate on projects, to report progress and achievements, and to encourage activities to promote further biodiversity outcomes.

The Forum is a special event with inspiring guest speakers, field trips and workshops, youth-focussed events, discussions and speakers.

The First Forum, Bio Buzz 2018, was held at Aramoana in Central Hawke's Bay. You can read more about the event and see photos from this wonderful day here. To keep up to date with future events, join the Guardians TODAY.

The Strategy and Action Plan particularly recognise that landowners - especially farmers - are a critical group for the success of biodiversity in Hawke's Bay, as much of the rare and threatened native biodiversity is on privately owned rural and urban land.

We want to work alongside landowners to protect and promote habitat restoration.  We will learn from them about their challenges and successes and explore current practices that are working in other regions at a series of workshops in 2019, and annually after that.

This may also include developing new incentives for habitat protection and restoration.

From the workshop, a plan will be developed from landowner knowledge, solutions and investigation.

Check here for updates....



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027 231 9367

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