Archived content: This media release was accurate on the date of publication. 


Rangers are planning a strong presence around Rotorua lakes during this weekend’s fishing season opening, to promote responsible and considerate behaviour throughout the season.

Date:  28 September 2017

Ranger with light no fires sign at Lake Tarawera.
Fires on public conservation land around the lakes are prohibited

The opening of the new fishing season happens on 1 October each year and generates a flurry of fishing and associated activities on Lakes Tarawera, Rotoiti and Okataina. Biodiversity ranger Paul Cashmore is leading a team on the water and at boat ramps to ensure people understand the regulations for activities on land that DOC administers.

"Traditionally the department receives complaints around the start of the fishing season. Typically, it's a small number of people spoiling things for the others by lighting illegal fires, taking dogs into protected areas or camping in areas where it isn't permitted," Paul Cashmore says.

A team of rangers will be visiting key sites around the lakes and at boat ramps to answer questions and discuss compliance issues. "Rather than responding to complaints as they come in, we're going to be out there early to address issues before they arise," says Mr Cashmore.

"Fires on public conservation land around the lakes are prohibited. The effect of fire on vegetation and wildlife can be catastrophic and potentially very costly. Offenders may be held personally liable for these costs, " Mr Cashmore says. "Even with all the rain we have had in recent weeks, the vegetation types around many of the Rotorua lakes are highly flammable."

For those wanting to camp overnight in preparation for an early start to the fishing on Sunday at Lake Tarawera, DOC is reminding lake users that camping is only permitted at designated areas at Hot Water Beach, Lake Tarawera Outlet and Humphries Bay. No camping is permitted on public conservation land around Lake Rotoiti, Rotoma or Okataina, and only at DOC's campground on Lake Okareka.

Hot Water Beach campsite has had four new toilets installed and caters for up to 30 campsites of various sizes. This site must be booked and details on this and facilities provided at all these campsites are available from the DOC website.

To report any suspected illegal activity on public conservation land call the DOC emergency hotline 0800 DOC HOT (0800 362 468).


For media enquiries contact:

Margaret Metcalfe
Phone: +64 27 423 5560

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