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A brief history...
The Forest Lifeforce Restoration Trust was established in 2006 to provide direction and funding for the restoration of threatened species of fauna and flora, and to restore the ngahere mauri (forest lifeforce) in the Maungataniwha and Pohokura native forests in the Central North Island.
Activity has increased significantly since 2006 with the establishment of two new projects in the Maungataniwha Native Forest.
The first involves an extensive predator operation and the establishment of a 600 ha sanctuary where the predator population has been reduced significantly, creating a safer environment for a variety of native bird species.
The second aims to increase the wild-grown population of Kakabeak (Clianthus maximus) - an extremely rare type of shrub. Before our efforts to re-establish this plant started yielding results there were only 109 plants known to be growing in the wild across the whole of New Zealand. Three of these were located on the Waiau Bluffs, within the Te Urewera National Park, adjacent to Maungataniwha.
Planting of the first Kakabeak returned to Maungataniwha took place in the winter of 2010.
The Maungataniwha Kiwi Project, part of BNZ Operation Nest Egg, has now seen nearly 200 Kiwi chicks hatched and released into the wild. Kiwi eggs are taken from Maungataniwha and incubated. The resulting chicks are then reared in safety at the Cape Sanctuary at Cape Kidnappers, south of Napier, before being released back into the wild.
Conversion of 4,000 ha of the Maungataniwha Pine Forest to native forest continues. A major challenge is the removal of regenerating pine that emerges and crowds out the slower-growing native forest species.