Volunteers and DOC staff at the end of a hard day’s work doing giant snail surveys at Boundary Stream

Image: Lauren Buchholz | DOC


1 October - 31 May: Help check and maintain traps in Boundary Stream Mainland Island.

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Volunteer Finn McCool checks a mustelid trap at Boundary Stream Mainland Island.
Volunteer Finn McCool checks a mustelid trap at Boundary Stream Mainland Island
Image: Lauren Buchholz


Boundary Stream Mainland Island takes volunteers from 1 October 31 May. The volunteer programme is closed from 1 June – 30 September each year.  


Boundary Stream Mainland Island is a conservation reserve covering approximately 800 ha in the Maungaharuru Range in northern Hawke’s Bay. The reserve ranges in elevation from 300 m (lowland environment) to 950 m (montane) above sea level. 

Boundary Stream is the largest and most intact forest tract remaining in the Maungaharuru Ecological District and provides an unparalleled series of habitats for native wildlife. It is home to numerous rare and endangered species such as kiwi, kōkako and kākā, Hawke’s Bay weta and other invertebrates, and over 220 species of native plants.

Boundary Stream is part of Poutiri Ao ō Tāne, a ground-breaking collaborative initiative to return native species to 8,800 ha in northern Hawke’s Bay. As a volunteer at Boundary Stream, you’ll be contributing to this unique project. Learn more about Poutiri Ao ō Tāne 


While some species work is available during certain times of the year, the primary role of volunteers at Boundary Stream is to check and maintain the reserve’s extensive mammalian predator trap network. You will be expected to: 

  • Work with various traps and poisons to reduce introduced predator numbers.
  • Be comfortable handling and disposing of dead animal pests.
  • Be willing to work in a remote and isolated location and prepared to spend significant periods of time alone.

What to expect

Accommodation: Due to the isolated nature of Boundary Stream Mainland Island, shared accommodation is provided for long-term volunteers. During busy periods, volunteers may be required to share rooms. 

Time required: Volunteers from outside Hawke’s Bay (including all international volunteers) are required to commit to a minimum one-month stay. 

Fitness level required: You’ll be fit and healthy and capable of doing manual work in the New Zealand bush for up to 8 hours each day. 

Experience required:

  • Experience working in the wilderness/bush – ideal.
  • VHF radio experience – strongly preferred (although training can be provided).
  • First aid training – bonus.
  • Fluent in English – required for safety purposes.

How to apply

Complete the online application form. If your application matches our needs, we’ll contact you with more information. Be aware that background checks and references may be required.


For more information or to register your interest, contact:

Ahuriri / Napier Office
Phone:   +64 6 834 3111
Fax:   +64 4 471 1117
Email:   napier@doc.govt.nz
Address:   59 Marine Parade
Napier 4110
Postal Address:   PO Box 644
Napier 4140
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