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Stock exclusion and native planting around Whakakī Lake

Stock exclusion and native planting have been the focus at Whakakī Lake in the last few weeks as the Hawke’s Bay Regional Council undertakes work in the identified Hot Spot.

Whakakī Lake is one of six environmental hotspots identified in the Regional Council’s annual plan last year. One million dollars was allocated to undertake freshwater improvement work in the six areas.

Regional Council staff are working with Dick Finney, Farm Manager for Hereheretau Station, to erect a one kilometre long fence along the Rahui Channel for stock exclusion. It is also working with the community to plant 400 plus native trees next to the bridge over the Rahui Channel. Further work is underway to develop an alternative water supply for stock that drink from the Rahui Channel. On the other side of Whakakī Lake a plan with the Iwitea Community is underway to build a 3.7km fence around Lake Paraoa for stock exclusion.

Hawke’s Bay Regional Council Group Manager Iain Maxwell says this is an exciting time as all the groups come together to restore this lake, which is a precious taonga for the local community.

Whakakī Lake Trust Chairman Richard Brooking says the trust is grateful to the Regional Council for the allocation of Hot Spot funding, which has kick-started fencing and riparian planting in the Rahui Channel.

“Our community has responded enthusiastically to the larger Freshwater Improvement Fund application, which, once approved, will be the most significant investment into Whakakī Lake to date,” says Richard Brooking.

Meanwhile the Ministry for the Environment has accepted a request for an extension of up to 12 months to submit a final application to the Freshwater Improvement Fund for Whakakī Lake project: Sunshine, wetlands and bees, which aims to revitalise the taonga of Whakakī Lake. The project has been approved for funding from the Freshwater Improvement Fund, which is administered by the Ministry for the Environment.

The extension will allow the Regional Council to work with the local community to review and finalise the proposed work programme. The project is required to obtain any resource consents required for work, prior to submitting the final application.

11 June 2018

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