2014 media releases



Enjoy and look after the dolphins this summer

Date:  19 December 2014
Seeing dolphins out on the water is one of the highlights of the Bay of Islands, but scientific studies show a decline in the bottlenose dolphins population with many calves not surviving their first year of life. It is important that everybody out and about in a boat helps look after them.

Say no to freshwater pests in Fiordland

Date:  19 December 2014
DOC would like to remind park users of the importance of making sure they ‘Check, Clean, Dry’ when entering Fiordland National Park this summer to help prevent the spread of didymo and other freshwater pests.

Te Urewera hunting permits available

Date:  19 December 2014
Hunters are now able to apply for new permits to hunt in Te Urewera.

Bad behavior earns hunter ban

Date:  17 December 2014
Five hunters have been trespassed from the Kaweka Forest Park. This follows concerns raised by trampers, about their behavior at Te Puia Lodge in the Kaweka Forest Park over Labour weekend 2014.

Rope to help eels enter Lake Tūtira

Date:  10 December 2014
Source:  Hawke's Bay Regional Council
It may look like a load of old rope, but it’s hoped that a length of mussel spat rope will be the key to repopulating Lake Tūtira with eels.

Te Matau a Maui Environmental Restoration

Date:  18 December 2014
A major partnership of local and national agencies will see more than $6 million invested in conservation in Hawke’s Bay over the next 5 years.

Waihi Beach whale stranding ends in death

Date:  17 December 2014
A three-metre pygmy sperm whale that stranded repeatedly at Waihi Beach on Monday afternoon was euthanised by Department of Conservation staff to minimise its suffering.

Minister welcomes predator control venture

Date:  16 December 2014
Source:  Office of the Minister of Conservation
Conservation Minister Maggie Barry has welcomed an innovative partnership to dramatically transform the way invasive predators are managed on mainland New Zealand.

Kaiwhakauka Track closure

Date:  15 December 2014
DOC is advising cyclists that the Kaiwhakauka Track, a side track of the Mountains to Sea cycle track, is temporarily closed after a bridge collapse on Friday.

Largest ever control campaign knocks back predators

Date:  15 December 2014
The Department of Conservation’s largest ever aerial 1080 campaign to combat this year’s rat and stoat plague has successfully knocked down predator populations in key target areas.

Aerial pest control complete in Eglinton valley

Date:  13 December 2014
Aerial pest control to protect New Zealand’s rare native bats and other species was completed in the Eglinton valley in Fiordland National Park yesterday.

Public submissions called on Ruahine land revocation proposal

Date:  12 December 2014
The Department of Conservation is calling for public submissions over a proposal to revoke part of Ruahine Conservation Park. This is to enable a land exchange application to be considered for the proposed Ruataniwha Water Storage Scheme.

Great white butterfly numbers knocked down

Date:  12 December 2014
The great white butterfly population in Nelson Tasman has been knocked down to a very low level but efforts continue to fully eradicate the pest, says the Department of Conservation.

DOC issues shark cage diving permits

Date:  11 December 2014
DOC has imposed strict rules to ensure great white sharks are not harmed by underwater cage diving operations around Stewart Island/Rakura and the activity is confined to one location to minimise the impact on commercial pāua divers.

Mokoia haven for native species

Date:  10 December 2014
Kayakers and boat users enjoying Lake Rotorua are being reminded that Mokoia Island is off limits to members of the public without a permit and the completion of quarantine procedures.

Palmerston North student wins outdoor whio adventure

Date:  09 December 2014
Palmerston North student Sarah Ridsdale has won the Genesis Energy Whio Ranger Conservation Week competition. Sarah and her Dad will spend four days in the Central North Island with the DOC whio recovery team.

Reptile revival on Motuihe Island

Date:  09 December 2014
The chances of long-term survival for the Pacific gecko have been boosted with the release of 54 of the threatened native reptiles in Auckland’s Hauraki Gulf.

Whio ‘boot camp’ opened

Date:  05 December 2014
A ‘boot camp’ for whio was opened at the Tongariro National Trout Centre near Turangi by the Minister of Conservation Hon Maggie Barry yesterday.

Southern giant petrel spotted on the East Coast

Date:  04 December 2014
DOC was pleased at the sighting of a southern giant petrel from the Antarctic Peninsula at Hicks Bay, East Cape last month.

Conservation volunteers praised on International Volunteers Day

Date:  05 December 2014
Volunteers are being thanked for their contribution to the growth of conservation on International Volunteers Day.

Minister launches 'boot camp' for whio

Date:  04 December 2014
Source:  Office of the Minister of Conservation
Conservation Minister Maggie Barry today officially opened a “boot camp” for whio at the Tongariro National Trout Centre near Turangi.

Nelson Lakes Battle for our Birds predator control completed

Date:  04 December 2014
The Department of Conservation has completed its Battle for our Birds aerial pest control in Nelson Lakes National Park to protect native wildlife from predator plagues.

Waihirere Domain to benefit from conservation funding

Date:  03 December 2014
Conservation funding will help volunteers continue the ongoing conservation and protection of Waihirere Domain in Gisborne.

Pest control to protect rare Canterbury parakeet

Date:  03 December 2014
Pest control to protect Canterbury’s rare orange-fronted parakeet from a rat and stoat plague was successfully completed in Arthur’s Pass National Park yesterday.

Turangi DOC office moving premises

Date:  02 December 2014
The Department of Conservation Turangi Field Base will be moving from their current premises on Turanga Place.

App to assist responsible camping this summer

Date:  02 December 2014
DOC is working with CamperMate, the company behind a free smartphone application for New Zealand and international campers, to highlight an innovative and simple tool to encourage conscientious camping this summer.

Cause of yellow-eyed penguin disease investigated

Date:  27 November 2014
Yellow-eyed penguin chicks/hōiho are under the spotlight this week as vets try to find the trigger for the mystery illness that continues to threaten the endangered birds.

Martinborough winemaker receives conservation award

Date:  28 November 2014
Source:  Office of the Minister of Conservation
Conservation Minister Maggie Barry has presented Clive Paton of Martinborough with the 2014 Loder Cup at a ceremony today, for his significant contribution to habitat restoration in New Zealand.

Clever duck app wins award for DOC

Date:  28 November 2014
A software app that’s helping save a bird rarer than our kiwi won the Environment and Sustainability category of NZ’s Spatial Excellence Awards last night in Wellington.

Nature Space website interests local environment groups

Date:  28 November 2014
Sixteen more Hawke’s Bay environment groups signed onto the Nature Space website at its regional launch last week.

Whales moved to Farewell Spit Nature Reserve

Date:  25 November 2014
The Department of Conservation says that three sperm whales that stranded at Rototai are being moved to Farewell Spit Nature Reserve today.

Mt Stanley Battle for our Birds predator control

Date:  24 November 2014
The Department of Conservation has completed its Battle for our Birds pest control around Mt Stanley in the Marlborough Sounds to protect native wildlife from predator plagues.

Boat hire ends on Lake Waikareiti

Date:  18 November 2014
The hire of rowboats for use on Lake Waikareiti in Te Urewera has been stopped following a Department of Conservation review of a recent search and rescue operation involving the boats.

Knocking the wind out of local wasps in Ruapehu

Date:  17 November 2014
A new local initiative to reduce the number of wasps in the Ohakune, Owhango, Raurimu, Whakapapa, National Park and Raetihi areas is about to get underway.

Fur seal just relaxing by the recreation centre

Date:  17 November 2014
A young male New Zealand fur seal seen near the Motueka Recreation Centre is healthy and just relaxing in the area.

Pest numbers down in Waitutu Forest

Date:  13 November 2014
Pest control has knocked rats and stoats down to undetectable levels in the Waitutu Forest in Fiordland National Park giving native birds a respite to rear their young this spring.

Hut damaged in vandals’ gun-toting rampage

Date:  13 November 2014
The Department of Conservation and police are seeking help for information after a public hut in the Mavora Lakes was vandalised. The incident could lead to vehicle access to the popular, family-friendly park being restricted.

Concern at illegal paua poaching in marine reserve

Date:  12 November 2014
There is concern at signs of paua illegally being taken from the Long Island-Kokomohua Marine Reserve in the Marlborough Sounds.

DOC praises PF Olsen for leading the way in conservation support

Date:  12 November 2014
DOC and the Kaharoa Kōkako Trust are celebrating the ongoing support received from PF Olsen LTD in protecting the North Island Kōkako population in the Kaharoa Conservation Area.

Landsborough and Abbey Rocks Battle for our Birds pest control completed

Date:  10 November 2014
The Department of Conservation has this week completed its Battle for our Birds pest control in the Landsborough Valley, and the Abbey Rocks area around Lake Paringa.

Tongariro Taupō conservation efforts rewarded

Date:  10 November 2014
The Tongariro Taupō community celebrated conservation and those individuals and groups recognised as outstanding in acting for nature on Friday night at the new DOC Taupō office.

Kahurangi Battle for our Birds aerial pest control completed

Date:  10 November 2014
The Department of Conservation has completed its Battle for our Birds aerial predator control work over about 257,000 hectares of Kahurangi National Park - the largest in one area it has ever carried out.

Battle for our Birds protecting Catlins mōhua

Date:  07 November 2014
The Department of Conservation begins its Battle for our Birds pest control in the Catlins to protect an important at risk population of mōhua/yellowhead in the beech forest.

Pilot whale stranding at Opotiki

Date:  07 November 2014
Pilot whales have stranded on the Ohiwa Spit at Opotiki on the East Coast. Get updates on the strandings.

Hunters sentenced for illegal spotlighting

Date:  05 November 2014
Two Southland men were sentenced today in the Gore District Court for hunting offences committed in a public reserve in Southland in November last year.

Public asked to look for entangled whale off Otago coast

Date:  06 November 2014
The Department of Conservation (DOC) is appealing to the public to look out for a humpback whale entangled in rope following a sighting off Taiaroa Head yesterday.

DNA tests complete kakabeak jigsaw

Date:  06 November 2014
Source:  Forest Lifeforce Restoration Trust
DNA tests on newly-discovered, nearly extinct plants have given researchers the most complete picture yet of how the critically-endangered kakabeak (Clianthus maximus, or ngutukākā in te reo) is clinging to survival on the inaccessible cliffs, bluffs and ledges of New Zealand’s wild back-country.

Awards celebrate Coastal Otago conservation champions

Date:  05 November 2014
The Department of Conservation Coastal Otago Conservation Awards have been announced. Find out what groups and individuals have been recognised for their efforts this year.

Stoat or ferret behind little penguin deaths

Date:  05 November 2014
The results from autopsies have found that the lethal wounds on 29 little penguins, found dead along the coast at Doctors Point near Dunedin, were caused by mustelid jaws.

Spring fertilising for conservation projects with an Environment Hui

Date:  04 November 2014
Spring – the time of year for new growth! A great time to ‘fertilise’ those conservation projects, and ‘sow seeds’ for new growth says DOC Partnerships Ranger, Trudi Ngawhare.

Final trout report confirms no risk to anglers

Date:  04 November 2014
Final research results released today confirm an earlier assessment that trout caught in areas following 1080 pest control do not pose a health risk to anglers.

Find a whio and join the whio rangers for a week

Date:  03 November 2014
Find a Whio, an online competition for Conservation Week, began on Saturday and runs through until the end of this month.

Kōkako flock to Rotorua CBD

Date:  01 November 2014
As part of Conservation Week 2014, Rotorua District Council and DOC have worked collaboratively to celebrate one of their local treasures - kōkako.

First West Coast timber salvage approved

Date:  30 October 2014
The Department of Conservation has issued its first authority to salvage wind-blown timber on West Coast public conservation land with the returns to be invested back into conservation.

Rotorua's Conservation Week like no other

Date:  30 October 2014
Plans are being put in place for Rotorua residents to receive a Conservation Week experience very different to previous years according to Partnerships Ranger Caraline Abbott.

‘Ghost’ whio returns to Whakapapanui Stream

Date:  29 October 2014
A ‘ghost’ whio that hatched on the Whakapapanui Stream in Tongariro National Park two seasons ago appears to have returned to the stream near Whakapapa Village with a mate this time.

Humpback whale washed up on Waikanae Beach

Date:  29 October 2014
A 10 metre whale has washed up on Waikanae Beach, south of Waikanae Boat Club.

Fears for New Zealand fairy terns

Date:  24 October 2014
The Department of Conservation holds fears for the safety of New Zealand’s most endangered indigenous breeding bird, the New Zealand fairy tern (tara-iti). Locals and visitors are asked to be mindful of laws protecting these birds.

Maruia Battle for our Birds pest control completed

Date:  24 October 2014
The Department of Conservation has this week completed its Battle for our Birds pest control in the Maruia valley and adjoining areas to protect native wildlife from rat and stoat plagues.

Taupō conservation kids meet kiwi

Date:  23 October 2014
Seeing a kiwi was a reward for a class of Hilltop School Weedbusters in Taupō during Save Kiwi Month.

New SMART course benefits marine mammals

Date:  22 October 2014
A new Department of Conservation course aims at minimising impacts of vessel activity on whales, dolphins and seals.

Clinton valley pest control operation complete

Date:  22 October 2014
The Department of Conservation’s Battle for our Birds aerial 1080 pest control operation in the Clinton valley in Fiordland National Park was successfully completed yesterday.

DOC takes steps to make visitors more aware of winter hazards on southern Great Walks

Date:  21 October 2014
The Department of Conservation says it is making changes on its website and on the tracks to make people more aware of the significant hazards visitors face in winter on the three southern Great Walks.

Fonterra-DOC Hikurangi catchment community open day

Date:  17 October 2014
Fonterra and DOC have held a community open day to mark a successful start to their 10-year Living Water programme.

Funding boost for Matukituki Valley

Date:  14 October 2014
The Department of Conservation’s efforts to protect native species in the Mount Aspiring National Park’s West Matukituki Valley have received a funding boost from a local business.

DOC welcomes food safety assessment on trout

Date:  09 October 2014
The Department of Conservation welcomes an initial assessment by the Ministry for Primary Industry which indicates that trout caught from areas following 1080 pest control operations do not pose a food safety risk to anglers.

Rodents knocked down in Waikaia Forest, Southland

Date:  08 October 2014
The threat to native birds and bats from plague levels of rats, mice and stoats has been reduced in Waikaia Forest with a successful knock-down of rodents in a recent pest control operation in the area.

Kerikeri Basin visitor facilities upgrade

Date:  06 October 2014
An upgrade of visitor facilities in the Kerikeri Basin is progressing well. The upgrade is the next stage of the Kerikeri Basin Sustainable Development Plan.

Sirocco at Parliament to thank New Zealand Aluminium Smelters

Date:  07 October 2014
Sirocco, New Zealand’s official spokesbird for conservation, will be at Parliament today to join in celebrating the achievements of the Kākāpō Recovery Programme over the last two decades.

A new DOC visitor centre for Queenstown

Date:  06 October 2014
The Department of Conservation’s Queenstown Visitor Centre is moving. From late November the visitor centre will be leaving Shotover Street to new ground floor premises at 50 Stanley Street right by the Ballarat St/Stanley St roundabout, a short walk from the town centre.

Critically endangered takahē released at Tawharanui

Date:  04 October 2014
Ten critically endangered takahē were moved from Fiordland to a predator free open sanctuary, in Tawharanui Regional Park north of Auckland today, (Saturday Oct 4) as part of the programme to ensure the survival of this rare native bird.

DOC appoints Chief Science Advisor

Date:  30 September 2014
Lincoln University Professor of Environmental Management Ken Hughey has been appointed to a new position as Chief Science Advisor for DOC, Director-General Lou Sanson announced today.

DOC says 1080 operations are at low risk

Date:  29 September 2014
The Department of Conservation (DOC) says the health risk to anglers from 1080 in trout following pest control operations is low.

Conservation Management Strategy for Northland operational

Date:  29 September 2014
The New Zealand Conservation Authority has approved the Conservation Management Strategy (CMS) for Northland, which becomes operational on Monday, 29 September 2014. The Northland Conservation Board welcomes the opportunity to monitor its implementation on behalf of the people of Te Taitokerau / Northland.

Maruia Valley Battle for our Birds pest control

Date:  29 September 2014
The Department of Conservation has today begun its Battle for our Birds pest control in the Maruia Valley area near Lewis Pass to protect native wildlife from rat and stoat plagues.

New DOC guidelines for Northland and Waikato

Date:  29 September 2014
New conservation management strategies for the Department of Conservation’s Northland and Waikato regions have come into effect today.

1080 trout trial results

Date:  26 September 2014
DOC has been working with Fish and Game New Zealand and the New Zealand Federation of Freshwater Anglers on laboratory trials to assess the impact on trout from eating poisoned mice after pest control operations.

Whio Operation Nest Egg starts in Kawhaka Creek

Date:  26 September 2014
DOC rangers yesterday retrieved the first egg ever from the Kawhaka site for captive rearing. The egg was 1 of 6 retrieved from the nest and transferred to the Isaac Wildlife Trust captive breeding facility at Peacock Springs in Christchurch.

Dogs attack birds in Wildlife Refuge

Date:  26 September 2014
The owner of two dogs found hunting and killing wildlife in the Ahuriri Estuary was successfully prosecuted recently.

Successful prosecution of a Central Hawke’s Bay farmer

Date:  23 September 2014
Following a successful prosecution of a Central Hawke’s Bay farmer, the Department of Conservation is warning farmers not to graze stock on reserve lands.

Albatross return to Dunedin heralds spring

Date:  25 September 2014
Spring arrived yesterday in Dunedin with the return of Taiaroa Head’s first northern royal albatross/toroa for the 2014 breeding season.

Kahurangi Battle for our Birds pest control begins

Date:  25 September 2014
The Department of Conservation has today begun its Battle for our Birds pest control in Kahurangi National Park to protect native wildlife from destructive rat and stoat plagues.

Seal shooting angers DOC staff

Date:  23 September 2014
The Department of Conservation is condemning the shooting of a New Zealand fur seal/kekeno found on a beach on Stewart Island and is asking for public help to find who is responsible.

Necropsy confirms Bryde's whale killed by ship strike

Date:  17 September 2014
A Bryde's whale found dead at Poutawa Beach, near Pakiri, was killed by a ship strike.

Rodents knocked down in the Iris Burn

Date:  17 September 2014
The threat to native birds and bats from plague levels of rats and stoats has been eased with a successful knock-down of rodents in a recent pest control operation in Fiordland National Park.

Keep seals safe by controlling your dog

Date:  17 September 2014
Following a series of fatal dog attacks on protected New Zealand fur seals/kekeno on Coastal Otago beaches recently, the Department of Conservation and Dunedin City Council remind dog owners to control their dogs around seals.

Students graduate from the inaugural Māori Conservation Foundation Course

Date:  16 September 2014
Twelve men and women of Ngāti Pāhauwera descent are celebrating this week after graduating from the Māori Conservation Foundation Course.

Successful Community Conservation Partnership Fund applicants announced in Hawke's Bay

Date:  16 September 2014
Local conservation projects were well underway, when the successful applicants of the Community Conservation Partnership Fund were announced last week.

$90,000 for kea conservation

Date:  15 September 2014
Source:  Office of the Minister of Conservation
The Government is providing $90,000 from the Community Conservation Partnership Fund to support the Kea Conservation Trust, Conservation Minister Dr Nick Smith announced today.

Conservation funding to restore natural habitat on the East Coast

Date:  12 September 2014
A collective of six marae on the East Coast is to receive funding to help restore ecosystems within their hapu.

Rugby legend celebrated at Hamurana Springs

Date:  12 September 2014
Rotorua's Hamurana Springs will see 600 native trees planted there this weekend. Volunteers are welcome to help.

Signed Memorandum of Understanding signals start of a new relationship

Date:  12 September 2014
A Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) has been signed between the Owhango Residents and Ratepayers Incorporated Society (ORRIS), the Department of Conservation (DOC) and the Ruapehu District Council (RDC).

Hunters and trampers urged to report sightings of rare kakabeak this spring

Date:  11 September 2014
Hunters, anglers, trampers and rafters are being asked to keep their eyes out this spring for one of our most striking native plants, the critically endangered kakabeak.

Conservation status of New Zealand’s freshwater invertebrates released

Date:  09 September 2014
The Department of Conservation recently published the threat classification for New Zealand’s freshwater invertebrates.

Kakepuku summit walk made easier

Date:  08 September 2014
More than 100 local residents and conservation volunteers joined with Te Kopua Iwi at Kakepuku Mountain Historic Reserve on Saturday (6 September) to celebrate the opening of a new track and visitor facilities.

New marine reserves on West Coast opened

Date:  08 September 2014
Source:  Office of the Minister of Conservation
Five new marine reserves were officially opened today by Conservation Minister Dr Nick Smith on the West Coast of the South Island to protect a range of marine ecosystems for conservation, science and recreation.

Public reminded to keep dogs under control after death of seal on Gisborne beach

Date:  05 September 2014
The Department of Conservation is reminding owners to control their dogs after a New Zealand fur seal pup died from a dog attack on a Gisborne beach this week.

Tongariro Forest Conservation Area pest control operation completed

Date:  05 September 2014
The Department of Conservation completed a pest control operation across Tongariro Forest last week. The operation, in conjunction with TBfree New Zealand, will protect some of New Zealand’s most endangered species and help prevent the spread of bovine tuberculosis.

Dog kills seal pup on Canterbury beach

Date:  04 September 2014
The death of a seal pup from a dog attack on a Canterbury beach this week is a reminder to dog owners to keep their pets under control.

New Central Otago bike tracks planned

Date:  04 September 2014
Mountain Bikers of Alexandra have signed a management agreement with the Department of Conservation (DOC) to build and manage mountain bike tracks on public conservation land.

Last known hind removed from Fiordland’s Secretary Island

Date:  04 September 2014
Two of the last remaining deer on Secretary Island, in Fiordland’s Doubtful Sound, have been culled by the Department of Conservation’s Secretary Island hunting team.

Leave the seals – they’re just resting up

Date:  03 September 2014
New Zealand fur seals being sighted on Coromandel beaches over the past couple of weeks are merely resting up and don’t need any human assistance, the Department of Conservation says.

Rats steeply rise in Kahurangi National Park

Date:  03 September 2014
Department of Conservation monitoring has confirmed rat numbers are building to extremely high levels in many parts of Kahurangi National Park posing a major threat to native wildlife.

Dart, Route Burn and Caples valley pest control operations complete

Date:  01 September 2014
The Department of Conservation completed its Battle for our Birds aerial 1080 pest control operation in the Dart, Route Burn and Caples valleys on Sunday 31 August.

DOC involved in the Biological Heritage science challenge

Date:  29 August 2014
The Department of Conservation (DOC) is excited to be a part of the New Zealand Biological Heritage science challenge that was launched today (August 29).

Win for South Taupō Wetland

Date:  29 August 2014
Seven kahikatea were planted to celebrate a multi-organisation partnership led by Project Tongariro receiving a grant for restoration and preservation work at Te Mātāpuna wetland.

Conservation community groups in the Auckland region receive nearly $700,000 from DOC's new conservation fund

Date:  29 August 2014
Auckland community groups with projects ranging from early childhood education to habitat restoration and pest control have been granted more than $690,000 from the Department of Conservation's new Community Conservation Partnerships Fund.

Successful applications to Community Conservation Partnerships Fund announced

Date:  29 August 2014
More than $8.5 million has been granted to support more than 100 community-based conservation groups to work on conservation projects alongside the Department of Conservation.

Waikaia pest control operation complete

Date:  28 August 2014
The Department of Conservation completed its Battle for our Birds aerial 1080 pest control operation in the Waikaia Forest in Southland yesterday.

East Coast hunters reminded permits are online

Date:  28 August 2014
Recreational hunting is an excellent way to get into the outdoors and to reduce the number of pigs, deer, feral cattle and goats on public conservation land. Hunters are reminded before they head out they can apply for a permit “online”.

Iris Burn pest control operation complete

Date:  26 August 2014
The Department of Conservation completed its Battle for our Birds aerial 1080 pest control operation in the Iris Burn valley in Fiordland National Park yesterday.

Waitutu pest control operation complete

Date:  26 August 2014
The Department of Conservation completed its Battle for our Birds aerial 1080 pest control operation in the Waitutu Forest in Fiordland National Park yesterday.

1080 operation in Abel Tasman National Park

Date:  26 August 2014
The Department of Conservation and Project Janszoon completed an aerial application of 1080 pesticide in the Abel Tasman National Park on 22 August.

$208,000 for conservation of wetlands

Date:  26 August 2014
Source:  Office of the Minister of Conservation
The Government is to provide a $208,000 Community Conservation Partnership Fund grant over three years to Project Tongariro to advance the restoration and preservation of the largest wetland in the Taupō basin, Conservation Minister Dr Nick Smith announced today at a community event in Turangi.

Conservation grant supports bird recovery

Date:  26 August 2014
Source:  Office of the Minister of Conservation
Wildbase Recovery Community Trust is to receive a $90,000 grant from the Department of Conservation to put towards a new state-of-the-art rehabilitation facility for birds and wildlife.

Pirongia pest control operation nears completion

Date:  21 August 2014
The final stage of the 2014 pest control operation on Pirongia Forest Park and Te Kauri Park Scenic Reserve is expected to be completed by this weekend on Saturday 23 August, weather permitting.

More funding to prevent kauri dieback disease

Date:  20 August 2014
Source:  Office of the Associate Minister of Conservation
Associate Conservation Minister Nicky Wagner today announced the Kauri 2000 Trust has received $57,000 to help prevent the spread of kauri dieback disease on the Coromandel Peninsula.

Shark finning to be banned from 1 October

Date:  20 August 2014
Source:  Joint release from the Minister for Primary Industries and the Minister of Conservation
A ban on the finning of all shark species within New Zealand waters will take effect from 1 October this year, Conservation Minister Dr Nick Smith and Primary Industries Minister Nathan Guy announced today.

Battle for our Birds operation underway in Waikaia

Date:  20 August 2014
The Department of Conservation’s Battle for our Birds pest control operation in the Waikaia Forest begins today.

Historic fire under Denniston Plateau

Date:  19 August 2014
Reports of smoke rising from cracks in Denniston Plateau are due to an historic fire which poses little significant threat to the area, says Department of Conservation (DOC) Conservation Services Manager Bob Dickson.

First Battle for our Birds operation underway

Date:  17 August 2014
The Department of Conservation’s Battle for our Birds pest control programme to protect native wildlife from rats and stoats this spring has started today with an operation in the Iris Burn valley in Fiordland National Park.

Aerial bait applications completed on Ahuahu - Great Mercury Island

Date:  15 August 2014
The final of two aerial bait applications required to remove rats and feral cats from Ahuahu/ Great Mercury Island have been safely and successfully completed.

New Rotorua guide for visitors and locals

Date:  13 August 2014
Explore Rotorua is a new publication which features maps and information on narly 40 different tracks and trails in the Rotorua area.

Whitebait season begins

Date:  15 August 2014
The Department of Conservation (DOC) is reminding the public to be aware of the whitebait regulations with the commencement of the 2014 season.

New wharf opens on Rangitoto Island

Date:  14 August 2014
Source:  Office of the Minister of Conservation
A new wharf designed to accommodate growing visitor numbers on Rangitoto Island in Auckland’s Hauraki Gulf/Tikapa Moana was formally opened today by Conservation Minister Dr Nick Smith.

New East Coast/Hawke’s Bay Conservation Board meet for first time

Date:  13 August 2014
The new East Coast/Hawke’s Bay Conservation Board held their inaugural meeting and field trip in Napier last week.

Ford repairs will keep Fiordland road open

Date:  13 August 2014
Repairs to a ford on the road to Doubtful Sound mean the road will no longer be closed during heavy rain.

Whitebait season starts Friday

Date:  13 August 2014
People preparing for whitebaiting opening day this Friday, 15th August, should be aware of regulations which allow fishing but act as a conservation measure to protect whitebait.

Pest butterfly eradication team winning but needs your help

Date:  13 August 2014
The Department of Conservation says it has driven Nelson Tasman’s pest great white butterfly population into a state of decline but it needs the public’s help to drive it to extinction.

Whitebaiters reminded to follow the rules as season begins

Date:  13 August 2014
The Department of Conservation is reminding the public to be aware of the whitebait regulations with the commencement of the 2014 season.

Whitebait season in the East Coast starts on 15 August

Date:  11 August 2014
The Department of Conservation is reminding the public that the whitebait season does not start until Friday 15 August.

Government expands national parks

Date:  12 August 2014
Source:  Office of the Minister of Conservation
The Mount Aspiring, Paparoa and Westland Tai Poutini National Parks have been expanded by 1250 hectares as a consequence of five blocks being added by Order in Council yesterday at Cabinet.

Decade of great white shark research nears end

Date:  11 August 2014
Source:  NIWA
A joint 10-year NIWA and Department of Conservation project to find out more about the great white sharks that inhabit New Zealand waters is coming to an end as scientists tackle the final phases of data analysis.

New Taupō DOC office opening

Date:  08 August 2014
Partnerships will be celebrated this weekend with the opening of the new Taupō community conservation complex.

$744,000 for Kiwis for Kiwi programme

Date:  07 August 2014
Source:  Office of the Minister of Conservation
The Government is to provide a $744,000 Community Conservation Partnership Fund grant to the Kiwis for kiwi™ to support 80 community-led kiwi recovery programmes around New Zealand.

New whale sanctuary, fur seal sanctuary and marine reserve opened

Date:  06 August 2014
Source:  Office of the Minister of Conservation
New marine protected areas to conserve Kaikoura's whales, dolphins, seals, albatrosses, rock lobster, shellfish and finfish were formally opened today by Conservation Minister Dr Nick Smith.

Idyllic Otago high country protected

Date:  05 August 2014
Source:  Office of the Minister of Conservation
New Zealand’s largest-ever conservation covenant of 53,000 hectares between Arrowtown and Wanaka was announced today by Conservation Minister Dr Nick Smith.

$700,000 grant for outdoor recreation

Date:  04 August 2014
Source:  Office of the Minister of Conservation
The Conservation Minister has announced a $700,000 grant from the Community Conservation Partnership Fund to tramping, hunting and mountain biking clubs for 107 back country projects.

Illegal kererū hunting suspected

Date:  01 August 2014
The Department of Conservation is concerned at recent evidence of illegal kererū /wood pigeon hunting on on Plains Road and Waimanoa Roadin Pureora Forest.

Track closures in the Far North

Date:  01 August 2014
Find out which tracks in the Far North remain closed to the public until further notice due to storm damage.

Reserves not for off road antics

Date:  31 July 2014
The Department of Conservation is disappointed to see the increase of irresponsible off road vehicle use at the Whakaipō Bay Recreation Reserve in Taupō.

Remaining DOC track closures in the Bay of Islands

Date:  28 July 2014
Find out which tracks in the Bay of Islands remain closed to the public until further notice due to storm damage.

DOC concern over kiwi death

Date:  28 July 2014
Goff, a male kiwi, was found dead last week in Tongariro Forest, within the core area of the Tongariro Forest Kiwi sanctuary.

Aerial pest control and ‘nest egg’ programme boost whio population

Date:  28 July 2014
A study of whio/blue duck in eastern Kahurangi National Park has shown the benefits of rearing ducklings in wildlife facilities. The study has also shown that aerial 1080 pest control has helped to increase whio numbers in the wild.

Fonterra-DOC Waituna wetlands work on show

Date:  25 July 2014
Fonterra and the Department of Conservation (DOC) are a year into their 10 year partnership to improve the Waituna catchment and marked the moment with a Community Open Day today.

Pest control may be last chance for Waikaia mōhua

Date:  25 July 2014
The recent rediscovery of threatened mōhua/yellowhead in Waikaia Forest, northern Southland, means an upcoming pest control operation is essential.

Dead seal on Taipa Beach

Date:  24 July 2014
A New Zealand fur seal (kekeno) has been found dead on Taipa Beach.

Board appointed for new era for Te Urewera

Date:  24 July 2014
Source:  Joint media release from the office of the Minister for Treaty of Waitangi Negotiations and the office of the Minister for Conservation
The Crown and Ngāi Tūhoe have announced the appointment of the inaugural members of Te Urewera Board.

Tūhoe claims settlement and Te Urewera bills passed

Date:  24 July 2014
Source:  Office of the Minister for Treaty of Waitangi Negotiations
The House sat under extended hours this morning to pass the third readings of the Tūhoe Claims Settlement Bill and the Te Urewera Bill.

Maud Island mice eradication begins

Date:  24 July 2014
The Department of Conservation carried out an operation yesterday to eradicate mice on Te Hoiere/Maud Island wildlife sanctuary in the Marlborough Sounds.

Remaining DOC track closures in the Far North and Bay of Islands

Date:  21 July 2014
All of the DOC huts and campgrounds in the Bay of Islands and Far North have been reopened to the public. However, some tracks are still closed.

New Aotea Conservation Park approved

Date:  20 July 2014
Source:  Office of the Minister of Conservation
12,109 hectares of Great Barrier Island in Auckland's Hauraki Gulf is to be set aside in a new Aotea Conservation Park, Conservation Minister Dr Nick Smith announced today.

Fur seals resting on Wellington beaches

Date:  17 July 2014
Over the winter months, seals spend much of their time resting on beaches and rocky shores around Wellington and Kapiti. Fur seals often need rest, not rescuing.

Northland Conservation Board supports rahui to protect kauri

Date:  17 July 2014
In a hui held 15 July 2014, Te Uri o Hau decided to place a rahui (temporary ban) over their maunga (mountain) Pukekaroro and Pukeareinga to prevent the spread of kauri dieback disease (PTA).

Work begins on making Great Mercury/Ahuahu a pest free sanctuary for native wildlife

Date:  17 July 2014
The Department of Conservation and the owners of Great Mercury Island are working together to remove rats and feral cats from the island.

Rock avalanche on Aoraki

Date:  16 July 2014
There has been a large rock avalanche from the South Face of Aoraki/Mount Cook altering the Hillary Ridge and damaging one of the Department of Conservation’s remote alpine huts.

$300,000 for community-led seabird conservation work

Date:  16 July 2014
Source:  Office of the Minister of Conservation
The Government is to provide $300,000 of funding to two community groups to support their work in protecting some of New Zealand’s special seabird species, Conservation Minister Dr Nick Smith announced today from the Otago Peninsula.

Kahurangi pest control to protect native species

Date:  15 July 2014
The Department of Conservation is planning aerial pest control over a large area of Kahurangi National Park this spring to protect native species from predator plagues that could decimate their populations.

Six kākāpō chicks successfully fledged

Date:  15 July 2014
Source:  Office of the Minister of Conservation
Kākāpō have had their most successful breeding season in three years with six chicks making it to the fledging stage this year, Conservation Minister Dr Nick Smith announced today.

Reforesting Forest Pools

Date:  14 July 2014
Forest Pools Reserve on the edge of Puketi Forest is having a facelift with more than 250 eco-sourced plantsplanted by volunteers at the beginning of July.

'Battle for our Birds' gets go ahead

Date:  13 July 2014
Source:  Office of the Minister of Conservation
New Zealand's largest-ever pest control programme has been given the go ahead to protect native wildlife like kiwi from a confirmed plague of rats and stoats, Conservation Minister Dr Nick Smith announced today in Maruia.

Many Northland tracks, campsites and huts closed due to recent storm event

Date:  11 July 2014
Due to recent storm events, a number of Department of Conservation tracks, huts, and campsites in Northland are temporarily closed. Tracks may be damaged or impassable due to fallen trees and/or slips.

Marine protection process begins in Otago

Date:  07 July 2014
The planning forum for marine protected areas on the south east coast of the South Island recently met for the first time.

Beach cast blue whale on the Taranaki Coast

Date:  04 July 2014
Recovery or burial of the carcass would likely be unsafe, impractical and expensive and at this stage the Department is considering leaving the carcass to decompose naturally.

Seal death angers DOC staff

Date:  04 July 2014
Local Department of Conservation staff were shocked and angered on finding the remains of a New Zealand fur seal/kekeno, that had been shot and skinned, washed up on a local beach over the weekend.

Dead whale washes up on Taranaki beach

Date:  04 July 2014
A large dead whale has washed up on the rocks at Tapuae Beach, just south of New Plymouth.

Kapiti Island visitor fees to be reduced

Date:  01 July 2014
Source:  Office of the Minister of Conservation
Conservation Minister Dr Nick Smith today announced a reduction to Kapiti Island permit fees to come into effect from tomorrow.

Training in Australia important part of DOC’s fire fighting duties

Date:  30 June 2014
The Department of Conservation rejects claims that fire fighting training for its staff in Australia is a “junket” and involves skills not applicable in New Zealand.

Weedbusters community tool kit for Taupō Turangi

Date:  26 June 2014
Fighting weeds just got easier for the Taupō Turangi communities with a Weedbusters community tool kit available for loan.

Seal killed in dog attack on Brighton beach

Date:  25 June 2014
The Department of Conservation (DOC) is asking the public for information about a dog attack on a protected NZ fur seal/kekeno found dead on Brighton beach near Dunedin.

Blessing opens new hut

Date:  25 June 2014
A brand new hut at Maropea Forks in the Ruahine Ranges is now available for use following a blessing by by Ngati Hinemanu me Ngati Paki recently.

Planting trees for cleaner waterways

Date:  24 June 2014
A team of 50 people including students and teachers from Taipa Area School planted around 1000 native trees and shrubs at Kate's Bush, near Taipa as part of Arbor Day celebrations on 5 June 2014.

Government to allow recovery of West Coast windfall timber

Date:  20 June 2014
Source:  Office of the Minister of Conservation
Special legislation is to be passed by Parliament to enable the recovery of high value native timber blown over in Cyclone Ita on West Coast public conservation land.

New Guardians of Lake Wanaka

Date:  19 June 2014
Source:  Office of the Minister of Conservation
Conservation Minister Dr Nick Smith today announced the appointment of three new Guardians of Lake Wanaka and the reappointment of three other members.

Work to begin on Denniston coal mine

Date:  18 June 2014
Source:  Office of the Minister of Conservation
Approval has been given for Bathurst Resources to commence work on its Escarpment Mining Project on the Denniston Plateau near Westport, Conservation Minister Dr Nick Smith announced today.

Storm closes DOC huts, tracks and campsites on Great Barrier Island

Date:  18 June 2014
Most Department of Conservation walking tracks, campsites and huts are closed on Great Barrier Island until further notice as a result of the storm that struck the Auckland region last week.

Living with the inquisitive kea

Date:  18 June 2014
An opportunity to learn all about the inquisitive kea and how to live together without conflict is coming to Motueka on Tuesday 24 June.

DOC praises award-winning partnerships

Date:  17 June 2014
The Department of Conservation (DOC) welcomes the recognition of two of its partnership projects, the Nina Valley Ecoblitz and Genesis Energy National Whio Recovery Programme, at the Ministry for the Environment's (MFE) 2014 Green Ribbon Awards last night.

Possum leghold trap catches Waipapa kiwi

Date:  13 June 2014
An adult female Northland brown kiwi was caught in a leghold trap near Waipapa township four weeks ago. The bird was taken to Whangarei Bird Recovery and was successfully released last week.

More people volunteering for conservation

Date:  16 June 2014
Source:  Associate Minister of Conservation
Associate Conservation Minister Nicky Wagner today paid tribute to the thousands of volunteers in the conservation sector who are playing a vital part to protect our special plants, animals and places.

Otago’s native fish more threatened

Date:  11 June 2014
Otago’s native freshwater fish are facing a crisis as numbers fall steadily largely due to pressure from introduced fish such as trout.

Whale research in Cook Strait

Date:  10 June 2014
An 11th annual Cook Strait Whale Survey will get underway on Saturday (14 June 2014) that aims to determine how humpback whales are recovering since whaling ended and furthers efforts to protect the whales.

New Akaroa marine reserve opened

Date:  08 June 2014
Source:  Office of the Minister of Conservation
New Zealand’s newest marine reserve in Akaroa Harbour was formally opened today by Conservation Minister Dr Nick Smith, and local MP and Environment Minister Amy Adams to coincide with World Oceans Day.

Wellington waterfront ‘walks the talk’ for World Oceans Day

Date:  05 June 2014
Wellington’s waterfront will feature fishy facts on its footpath this weekend to mark World Oceans Day on Sunday 8 June.

Landslide kills female kākāpō

Date:  04 June 2014
A landslide on Whenua Hou/Codfish has claimed the life of an adult female kākāpō named Maggie.

DOC to strengthen pest control procedures

Date:  04 June 2014
The Department of Conservation says it will put in more rigorous processes for aerial 1080 pest control operations following an internal review of a Marlborough Sounds’ operation last November.

Kaimanawa horse muster completed for 2014

Date:  30 May 2014
The biannual Kaimanawa horse muster has been successfully completed, with the operation coming to a close on Thursday 29 May with the muster of 172 horses.

Changes in conservation status of New Zealand freshwater fish

Date:  30 May 2014
The New Zealand freshwater fish threat classification panel led by DOC has made changes to the classification of freshwater fish, giving several species a higher conservation status.

Napier man charged with illegally importing elephant ivory

Date:  29 May 2014
A 61 year old Napier man has been charged with illegally importing elephant ivory. The charges have been filed in the Napier District Court by the Department of Conservation.

Fiordland Link monorail declined

Date:  29 May 2014
Source:  Office of the Minister of Conservation
The application by Riverstone Holdings Limited to build and operate a $240 million monorail in Fiordland has been declined by Conservation Minister Dr Nick Smith.

Northland Conservation Board welcomes its new Board members

Date:  29 May 2014
The Northland Conservation Board briefed its new appointees on the Board's key projects and relationships in an induction day held at Mokonuiarangi Marae, Utakura, Hokianga on 23 May 2014.

Endangered southern Tokoeka kiwi found dead in Otaki

Date:  27 May 2014
Department of Conservation staff are puzzled as to how a nationally endangered kiwi of South Island origin came to be found dead in the North Island town of Otaki.

Appointments to Conservation Boards made

Date:  22 May 2014
Source:  Associate Minister of Conservation
Associate Conservation Minister Nicky Wagner today announced 124 appointments to the 14 Conservation Boards around the country.

Endangered sea lion shot on Stewart Island

Date:  16 May 2014
The Department of Conservation (DOC) is asking the public for help following the recent shooting of an endangered New Zealand sea lion/rāpoka/whakahao on Stewart Island.

$26.5m over four years to protect kauri

Date:  15 May 2014
Source:  Primary Industries Minister Nathan Guy and Conservation Minister Dr Nick Smith
The Government is investing $15.8 million of operating funding and $10.7 million of capital funding over the next four years to ramp up measures to protect New Zealand’s magnificent kauri forests from the dieback disease.

Rotorua resident charged with theft of native wood

Date:  15 May 2014
The Department of Conservation are encouraging the public to check the source of their native firewood as a Rotorua resident was recently charged with theft of timber from a scenic reserve.

Imagine app brings city to nature

Date:  13 May 2014
Locally extinct in Christchurch, tūī, jewelled gecko and tree wētā are sneaking back into the city thanks to a new Department of Conservation (DOC) interactive app launched today.

Giant rat caught on pest-free Motuarohia/Roberton Island

Date:  12 May 2014
A very large male Norway rat was caught and killed on Thursday 30 April 2014 on private land at the western end of pest-free Motuarohia / Roberton Island, in the eastern Bay of Islands.

First kākāriki released into Abel Tasman National Park

Date:  07 May 2014
Twelve kākāriki or yellow-crowned parakeet released into the Abel Tasman National Park today are the first captive raised kākāriki to ever be released onto the New Zealand mainland.

Six more takahē to call Cape Sanctuary home

Date:  07 May 2014
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The Department of Conservation (DOC) are to increase takahē numbers in Cape Sanctuary, Hawke’s Bay, four-fold due to a transfer of six birds this Thursday 8 May.

Heaphy Track to fully reopen on Monday

Date:  02 May 2014
Mountain bikers can start riding the Heaphy Track from Monday 5 May when the track will reopen following the clearance of fallen trees and other storm damage.

Kākāpō Recovery and Auckland Zoo team up to save kākāpō chick

Date:  01 May 2014
A critically ill 10-day old kākāpō chick flown from Hauturu o Toi (Little Barrier Island) to Auckland in late March is now thriving at Auckland Zoo following an intensive team effort by Zoo and DOC staff.

DOC's new Taupō Office

Date:  30 April 2014
The Department of Conservation's new regional office and community house complex is due to be completed sometime in late July.

Sampling shows beech seeding widespread

Date:  30 April 2014
Results from beech forest sampling across the South Island confirm a widespread seeding event is underway, Department of Conservation scientists say.

Damage to Heaphy and Copland Tracks - Update

Date:  30 April 2014
Department of Conservation (DOC) staff are working to clear trees and slips on storm-damaged tracks including the Heaphy and Copland.

DOC deals to weeds

Date:  29 April 2014
The Department of Conservation (DOC) has just completed its annual weed control of invasive exotic trees in the Hunter Valley within the Hawea Conservation Park.

Take care outdoors after storm damage

Date:  23 April 2014
The Department of Conservation is asking the public to be extra careful when heading outdoors, with widespread storm damage affecting many tracks and facilities in particular in the west and north of the South Island.

A splash of colour for Huka Falls kiosk

Date:  17 April 2014
A fresh colour and fresh coat of paint for the volunteer kiosk at the Huka Falls car park came about thanks to Dulux donated paint and painters, and locals volunteering their time.

Kākāpō nestcam streams live to the world

Date:  17 April 2014
Source:  Kākāpō Recovery
For the first time ever, the global public will be able to watch kakapo nesting activity live, thanks to a special partnership between Telecom NZ and Kākāpō Recovery.

Community contributes towards good news for Mokoia Island

Date:  17 April 2014
The Department of Conservation and Mokoia Islannd Board of Trustees thank the community for their contribution towards the recent pest incursion response.

Better survival chances for Wanaka skinks

Date:  11 April 2014
Eighty five endangered grand and Otago skinks have been collected near Wanaka in an operation led by the Department of Conservation (DOC) aimed at increasing their numbers.

Kiwi release on farm a major step towards 10,000 hectare kiwi sanctuary

Date:  11 April 2014
The Prime Minister John Key today joined Kaipara farmers Gill and Kevin Adshead in welcoming eight more Northland brown kiwi to the Gardner family farm, 65 km north of Auckland.

Funding available for Northland community conservation projects

Date:  09 April 2014
The Northland Conservation Board welcomes the new Community Conservation Partnership Fund announced by Conservation Minister Dr Nick Smith on 30 March 2014.

A new reserve in the Long Gully Terraces

Date:  08 April 2014
Mata-au Scientific Reserve was part of Bendigo Station, but has been retired from farming after recent tenure review, and now is managed by the Department of Conservation (DOC) as a scientific reserve.

New conservation fund to boost local projects

Date:  04 April 2014
The new Community Conservation Partnership Fund is a much needed boost to on-the-ground projects. DOC is holding a funding workshop in Gisborne on Tuesday 15 April to assist community groups complete their applications.

Call to plant cover crops that don't attract pest butterflies

Date:  03 April 2014
The Department of Conservation is asking Nelson gardeners to consider planting cover crops that don’t attract the great white butterfly to their garden.

Motutapu Island provides a second home for Coromandel brown kiwi

Date:  02 April 2014
Eleven Coromandel brown kiwi have this week been relocated from the Moehau Kiwi Sanctuary on the Coromandel Peninsula to predator free Motutapu Island in the Hauraki Gulf Marine Park.

DOC appoints services managers in South

Date:  04 April 2014
Three Conservation Services Managers have been appointed by the Department of Conservation in the southern South Island.

Rat caught on pest-free Urupukapuka Island

Date:  03 April 2014
A large male Norway rat was caught and killed in a DOC 200 trap on Urupukapuka, one of the Project Island Song islands in the Bay of Islands, on 31 March 2014.

DOC thanks quick fire respondents

Date:  03 April 2014
Early detection and rapid response to fires on Central North Island DOC land by adjoining rural fire authorities, has prevented large fires in the current extreme fire conditions.

Rifleman birds heard again at A’Deane’s Bush

Date:  31 March 2014
A’Deane’s Bush in the Central Hawkes Bay is now home to a population of the threatened native species titipounamu (rifleman).

Departments work together for nature and nurture

Date:  31 March 2014
A Memorandum of Understanding has been signed between the Department of Corrections and the Department of Conservation which will see increased work by offenders to improve and maintain the Central Region’s natural environment.

New conservation fund announced

Date:  30 March 2014
Source:  Office of the Minister of Conservation
A Community Conservation Partnership Fund to support the work of voluntary organisations undertaking natural heritage and recreation projects was launched today by Conservation Minister Dr Nick Smith at the opening of the new Hoddy Estuary Park in Nelson.

Kauri dieback detected in Coromandel

Date:  25 March 2014
Source:  Joint release from the Minister for Primary Industries and the Minister of Conservation
Test results showing the presence of Phytophthora taxon Agathis (PTA) or Kauri dieback disease in the Whangapoua Forest just north of Whitianga is a major concern, Conservation Minister Dr Nick Smith and Primary Industries Minister Nathan Guy say.

Threatened geckos to find sanctuary on Motuihe Island

Date:  25 March 2014
On Sunday 30 March 2014 one hundred Duvaucel's geckos were released on Motuihe Island in the Hauraki Gulf Marine Park.

‘Encouraging’ blue duck numbers in inland Hawke’s Bay

Date:  23 March 2014
Endangered whio, or blue duck, continue to thrive in the mountainous rivers and streams of inland Hawke’s Bay, according to a survey conducted by the Department of Conservation.

Minister signs new conservation accord

Date:  22 March 2014
Source:  Office of the Minister of Conservation
An accord between the newly established $100 million NEXT Foundation and the Government was signed in Nelson today by Conservation Minister Dr Nick Smith.

Rare duck numbers on the rise

Date:  21 March 2014
It's good news for New Zealand's rarest duck, the pāteke, or brown teal, with recent flock counts in Northland showing the biggest population since surveys began in 1988.

DOC urges hunters to think safety this ‘roar’ season

Date:  19 March 2014
As the days become shorter and morning and evenings cooler, hunters throughout New Zealand will be looking forward to the annual deer ‘roar’ or ‘rut’.

Rare parakeets flown to safe island home

Date:  19 March 2014
Eighteen rare native parakeets are today winging their way from Christchurch to a Bay of Plenty island sanctuary to build a self-supporting population there as this species faces the ongoing threat of predators in Canterbury.

Zero tolerance to dumping in public reserves

Date:  18 March 2014
The Department of Conservation (DOC) is right behind the crackdown on rubbish dumping in the East Coast region and strongly supports plans to catch or trace offenders.

DOC vaccinates West Coast kiwi chicks

Date:  18 March 2014
DOC has begun a precautionary programme of vaccinating West Coast kiwi chicks in response to the death of seven young birds on Rona Island crèche in Lake Manapouri.

Final kākāpō eggs hatch

Date:  17 March 2014
Source:   Kākāpō Recovery
A kākāpō chick has hatched in the wild on Hauturu o Toi/Little Barrier Island, less than two years after a small adult population was re-introduced to the island.

New marine protected areas for Kaikoura

Date:  16 March 2014
Source:  Joint release from the Minister for Primary Industries and the Minister of Conservation
The Government today announced a new marine reserve, whale and fur seal sanctuary, five customary fishing areas and amateur fishing regulations to improve the management of Kaikoura’s coast and ocean.

Membership of Otago Marine Protection Planning Forum announced

Date:  15 March 2014
Source:  Office of the Minister of Conservation
Conservation Minister Dr Nick Smith today announced the appointment of a 14-member community-led forum to consider marine protection for the Otago coastline.

Ministers welcome DOC’s health and safety pledge

Date:  13 March 2014
Source:  Joint release from the Minister of Labour and the Minister of Conservation
DOC today became the first Government department to formally join the Business Leaders’ Health and Safety Forum, Conservation Minister Dr Nick Smith and Labour Minister Simon Bridges announced.

Arthur’s Pass Walking Track opens as part of 150th celebrations

Date:  13 March 2014
The new Arthur’s Pass Walking Track will be officially opened this Saturday (15 March 2014) as part of the 150th anniversary celebrations of the first European discovery of Arthur’s Pass.

Captive bred whio to be released back into wild

Date:  12 March 2014
The Battle for our Birds continues with the release of more than 40 captive bred whio back into the wild over the next week.

Fourth World Wetlands Day celebrated at Lake Ngatu

Date:  10 March 2014
Six local primary schools joined a group of homeschool pupils to celebrate World Wetlands Day for the fourth year in a row at Lake Ngatu on 27 and 28 February 2014.

Catlins mōhua increase after pest control

Date:  07 March 2014
An important mōhua or yellowhead population in the Catlins is on the increase after a successful joint agency pest control programme last spring.

New Zealand Army and the Department of Conservation join forces

Date:  07 March 2014
Building work began yesterday in an exciting partnership between the Department of Conservation and the New Zealand Defence Force. New Zealand Army engineers and builders are constructing a new hut at Maropea Forks in the Western Ruahine Forest Park.

Low count triggers new plan for endangered New Zealand sea lion

Date:  06 March 2014
Source:  Office of the Minister of Conservation
A Threat Management Plan for the New Zealand sea lion is to be developed in response to this season’s low pup count on the Auckland Islands, Conservation Minister Dr Nick Smith announced today from the HMNZS Wellington at Port Ross in conjunction with Primary Industries Minister Nathan Guy.

New subantarctic research station proposed

Date:  05 March 2014
Source:  Office of the Minister of Conservation
Conservation Minister Nick Smith today inspected the site of a proposed new research station to be named after the late Sir Peter Blake on the east coast of the main Auckland Island in the subantarctic.

Northland Conservation Board wants better planning for future power boat races in the Bay of Islands

Date:  05 March 2014
Following the Bay of Islands Power Boat Race held in Paihia on 1 March 2014, the Northland Conservation Board is seeking improvements to planning for next year's race to ensure better measures to protect marine mammals in the Bay area.

Red vented bulbul $1,000 reward ends

Date:  04 March 2014
The reward period for sighting information leading to the capture of an invasive pest bird – the red-vented bulbul – has ended without anyone qualifying for the payout.

First kākāpō chick hatches

Date:  03 March 2014
Painstaking repairs to a crushed kakapo egg have paid dividends with the arrival of the first kakapo chick since 2011.

Pureora hunting competition roars to life again

Date:  03 March 2014
The 26th annual Pureora Hunting Competition for red deer is due to begin from 17 March to prizegiving day on 27 April.

New subantarctic marine reserves established

Date:  02 March 2014
Source:  Office of the Minister of Conservation
Conservation Minister Dr Nick Smith today formally established three new marine reserves covering 435,000 hectares of ocean surrounding the Antipodes, Bounty and Campbell Islands from Perseverance Harbour, Campbell Island.

Sea what a difference you can make!

Date:  28 February 2014
The Dunedin Coastal Clean-up and Seashore Survey this Sunday 2 March will get Seaweek off to a great start.

Permits to be required for shark cage tourism

Date:  28 February 2014
Source:  Office of the Minister of Conservation
Tourism businesses viewing great white sharks will be required to have a permit in the same way as for whale, dolphin and seal watching, Conservation Minister Dr Nick Smith announced today.

Green Flag awards for Timber Trail and Waitomo Ruakuri walk

Date:  28 February 2014
The Pureora Timber Trail and Ruakuri Walk at Waitomo were celebrated recently for receiving the internationally-recognised Green Flag award, which marks good quality public parks and green spaces that are managed in environmentally sustainable ways.

National battle to protect whio ramps up

Date:  28 February 2014
The Whio Forever partnership is adding another tool to its arsenal of protection this year with funding to build a new whio rearing facility at the Tongariro National Trout Centre near Turangi.

First New Zealand storm petrel egg found by scientists

Date:  28 February 2014
Researchers studying the New Zealand storm petrel on Te Hauturu-o-Toi (Little Barrier Island) in the Hauraki Gulf Marine Park are the first scientists to find a New Zealand storm petrel egg.

Restoring the Skippers landscape

Date:  26 February 2014
The Department of Conservation in conjunction with the Wakatipu Wilding Conifer Control Group, is undertaking the spraying and removal of all remaining douglas fir and larch trees on public conservation land around the Skippers township.

Community snorkelling days on again at Tasman Bay marine reserves

Date:  26 February 2014
The opportunity to put on a snorkel and find out what’s under the water near the Tasman Bay marine reserves is happening again this year as part of Seaweek.

A dog’s breakfast in Motueka

Date:  25 February 2014
Motueka dog owners are being invited to a free breakfast while taking their dogs for a walk on the Motueka foreshore, at the first ‘Dog’s Breakfast’ to be held in New Zealand.

East Coast kiwi returns home

Date:  24 February 2014
The kiwi injured in a possum trap a month ago was released at Opato in the Waioeka Gorge near Gisborne last week. The kiwi was released in a Punga forested gully and hung around for a few minutes sniffing the ground and ignoring staff then disappeared into nearby punga fronds.

Historic Southland viaducts saved in funding deal

Date:  22 February 2014
Source:  Office of the Minister of Conservation
Four giant timber viaducts built nearly a century ago in the rugged Waitutu Forest on the south coast of the Fiordland National Park are to be restored in an agreement between the DOC, the Southland District Council and the Port Craig Viaduct Trust.

Conservation Minister visits subantarctic islands

Date:  21 February 2014
Source:  Office of the Minister of Conservation
Conservation Minister Dr Nick Smith departs Bluff tomorrow afternoon on the HMNZS Wellington on its annual service trip to the Bounty, Antipodes, Campbell, Auckland and Snares Islands.

Historic Ruapekapeka Pā gets digital makeover

Date:  21 February 2014
Historic Ruapekapeka Pā, located outside of Whangarei, will receive a digital makeover with the launch of the Ruapekapeka website.

Kākāpō successfully breed on Hauturu/Little Barrier Island

Date:  20 February 2014
Source:  Kākāpō Recovery
One of three female kākāpō released onto Hauturu o Toi/Little Barrier Island in 2012 has been discovered nesting with three fertile eggs, bringing unexpected joy to the Kākāpō Recovery programme team.

DOC celebrates 25 years of conservation volunteer programme

Date:  20 February 2014
The Department of Conservation (DOC) is celebrating 25 years of its Southland and Otago Conservation Volunteer Programme.

Fish needed for starving penguin chicks

Date:  18 February 2014
The Department of Conservation (DOC), Penguin Place, the Yellow-eyed Penguin Trust and volunteers are supplementary feeding starving yellow-eyed penguin chicks during one of the most disastrous breeding seasons in recent years.

DOC rejects claims anglers at risk from 1080

Date:  18 February 2014
The Department of Conservation says it is concerned by unsubstantiated claims from a freshwater fishing lobby group that anglers are at risk from 1080 poisoning.

Deadline approaches for submissions on Aotea/Great Barrier Island Conservation Park

Date:  17 February 2014
Submissions on the proposed Aotea/Great Barrier Island conservation park close on 28 February 2014.

Celebrate Children's Day in nature

Date:  14 February 2014
Visit Ivon Wilson Park in Te Anau on Sunday 2 March and celebrate national Children's Day with the biggest ever 'Play Date with Nature' and fun for the whole family.

Multiple killer whale stranding at Blue Cliffs Beach, Southland

Date:  12 February 2014
The Department of Conservation responded to the killer whale stranding at Blue Cliffs beach near Tuatapere in Southland in the early hours of this morning.

Northland Conservation Board welcomes extension of Kauri Dieback Management Programme

Date:  09 February 2014
Enjoy Northland's stunning natural areas, but please do your bit to protect our great kauri from the deadly kauri dieback disease and devastation by wildfires is a message from the Northland Conservation Board.

Brown is the new green

Date:  11 February 2014
Brown foliage marks the success of the recent round of poisoning of juvenile wilding pines on the Tongariro River.

Four wheelers trim track back

Date:  04 February 2014
Trimming three kilometres of the 42 Traverse track of weeds and bush clears the way for multi-users of the popular recreation track in the Tongariro Forest.

First kākāpō eggs in three years

Date:  03 February 2014
Source:  Kākāpō Recovery
Kakapo Recovery has discovered two kakapo mums nesting on Whenua Hou/Codfish Island – the first time in three years - but it will be another week before it’s known whether their eggs are fertile.

Waipoua Forest fire

Date:  03 February 2014
A fire began in the early hours of this morning (Monday 3 February 2014) near Lookout Road, Waipoua Forest, Northland. At this stage, the fire is under control.

DOC marks World Wetlands Day

Date:  31 January 2014
World Wetlands Day (Sunday February 2) provides an opportunity to highlight the important role wetlands play in our environment and to spotlight work being done to protect them.

Reflection on the Mahi Aroha summer programme

Date:  31 January 2014
The 50th anniversary of the Tongariro summer programme, rebranded as Mahi Aroha: Doing it for Conservation, has now come to a close, leaving great memories and inspiring people to get back out and continue to enjoy the natural treasures of the Central North Island.

‘Battle for Our Birds’ launched to save native species

Date:  29 January 2014
Source:  Office of the Minister of Conservation
Conservation Minister Dr Nick Smith tonight launched DOC’s largest-ever species protection programme called ‘Battle for Our Birds’ at his annual speech to the Rotary Club of Nelson.

DOC to protect species at risk from predator plague

Date:  29 January 2014
The Department of Conservation is preparing a major new pest control campaign to protect vulnerable native species from an expected surge in rat and stoat numbers later this year.

Dart Valley re-opened for tramping

Date:  27 January 2014
Tramping access through the Dart Valley has now been restored with the completion of a new walking route that detours around the massive landslide and newly formed lake.

Injured East Coast kiwi being treated at Massey University

Date:  22 January 2014
An injured kiwi, handed in to the Department of Conservation (DOC) in Gisborne by a member of the public, has been transferred to Wildbase at Massey University for treatment.

Hope lost for stranded whales on Farewell Spit

Date:  16 January 2014
The Department of Conservation says eight pilot whales it has spent two days trying to get safely back out to sea have been found stranded again on Farewell Spit this morning, a ninth whale with them and all in poor condition.

Largest private stoat trapping network nears completion

Date:  15 January 2014
Source:  Project Janszoon
The largest stoat trapping network undertaken by a private trust in New Zealand is about to be completed, enabling the reintroduction of birds like pateke and kakariki back to the Abel Tasman National Park.

Whales stranded in Golden Bay

Date:  14 January 2014
Media releases and updates about the whale stranding in Golden Bay.

Shark fin ban confirmed and timetable tightened

Date:  09 January 2014
Source:  Primary Industries Minister Nathan Guy and Conservation Minister Dr Nick Smith
Primary Industries Minister Nathan Guy and Conservation Minister Dr Nick Smith today confirmed the Government’s decision to ban shark finning.

First Project Island Song Urupukapuka Island Fun Day

Date:  09 January 2014
Bay of Islands' Urupukapuka Island campers and visiting boaties enjoyed the world's first Project Island Song Fun Day on 4 January 2014.

New research confirms benefits of marine reserves

Date:  08 January 2014
Significant increases in the abundance and size of marine species in Tasman Bay marine reserves confirm their conservation benefits, Conservation Minister Dr Nick Smith said today while publicly releasing a new research report at the Horoirangi Marine Reserve.

Winter mountain biking on Heaphy Track permanently approved

Date:  07 January 2014
Source:  Office of the Minister of Conservation
Conservation Minister Dr Nick Smith today announced at Karamea on the West Coast the permanent approval of mountain biking on the Heaphy Track from 1 May to 30 September each year.

Five DOC sites receive renowned ‘Green Flags’

Date:  06 January 2014
Source:  Office of the Minister of Conservation
Conservation Minister Dr Nick Smith today welcomed the awarding of the international Green Flag to five DOC sites around New Zealand from the Lake Matheson Walk in South Westland.

Stranded whales on Farewell Spit unable to be saved

Date:  06 January 2014
Thirty-nine pilot whales are unable to saved after stranding on Farewell Spit overnight.