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New Zealand Government closes further tracks to prevent spread of kauri dieback
New Zealand Conservation Minister Eugenie Sage has announced that the Department of Conservation (DOC) will close 21 tracks across kauri land to help prevent the spread of kauri dieback.
An additional 10 tracks will also be partially closed and the open sections upgraded to eliminate wet and muddy sections of track and better protect the roots of kauri trees.
Speaking yesterday, Minister Sage advised “as there is currently no proven cure for kauri dieback, the best way to protect our kauri is to slow and stop the disease from spreading.
“The Department is closing or partially closing tracks in Kaitaia, the Kauri Coast, Whangarei, on Aotea/Great Barrier Island, in Hauraki, Waikato, and Tauranga. The track closures are permanent and will be monitored.
“I appreciate some people may be disappointed by the closure of a favourite track but I strongly encourage everyone do the right thing and respect the track closures to reduce the risk to kauri forests.”
The decision was made after public consultation, and the majority of public submissions favoured closure.
It follows past track closures by DOCs to prevent the spread of kauri dieback.
Minister Sage advised “closures may be reconsidered in the future if additional science and other information provide certainty that public access would not cause any risk to kauri.
“Although protecting kauri is the key focus, the Department did consider the need to maintain recreation opportunities and there are still many walking and tramping options available in nearby areas.”
In consultation with local communities and iwi, DOC is continuing work to establish next steps for the remaining tracks on kauri land that have not yet been upgraded. This will include their upgrade, closure or partial closure.
Tracks have been closed or partially closed where there is high kauri dieback risk, low visitor numbers, high upgrade and maintenance cost and where there are similar recreational experiences available in the vicinity.
For the 10 partially closed tracks, a section of the track will be permanently closed while the rest of the track is upgraded to eliminate wet and muddy sections and protect kauri roots.
Image: Track through kauri forest at Waitakere.
17th October 2018 - Department of Conservation warning for beachgoers on wildlife dangers
15th August 2018 - Auckland Council commits to providing more parks and open space
22nd February 2018 - Waitakere ranges closure a ‘devastating blow’ to recreation
13th August 2017 - Waitakere Ranges Regional Park faces closure over kauri dieback
27th June 2017 - Voice of the visitor to guide new walks partnership
25th May 2017 - Outdoor Recreation Consortium gets certainty of funding
22nd April 2016 - Fresh water vital to New Zealand’s green tourism brand
28th October 2014 - DOCS ready for New Zealand Conservation Week
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