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Track closures follow report on kauri killer disease

Posted by SCe Comments Off on Track closures follow report on kauri killer disease

Dead kauri on Maungaroa Ridge Track

On 5 December Te Kawerau a Maki attended a meeting of the Auckland Council Environment and Community Committee to inform the committee it had placed a rahui over the Waitakere Ranges Regional Park which would prevent people from entering it, in the hope of allowing the kauri in the forest to heal. A recent report showed that kauri areas infected with the killer disease phytophthora agadicida had doubled since 2011 and that the disease was most prevalent along tracks and bait-lines. In other words, it is being spread by humans. Pigs and other animals may be secondary vectors.

The Committee rejected officers’ recommendations to only close a few tracks, and ask for a much fuller report to be brought back in February, which would include looking at Controlled Area Notice or CAN under the Biosecurity Act and more extensive track closures.

The full resolutions are below


Kauri Dieback Management – Waitākere Ranges Regional Park



The substantive motion was put.


Resolution number ENV/2017/182

MOVED by Mayor P Goff, seconded by Chairperson P Hulse:

That the Environment and Community Committee:

a)         note that the council’s proposed response to manage kauri dieback is included in the draft Regional Pest Management Plan and Regional Parks Management Plan, and that funding to enable the council to deliver on this plan will be considered as part of the Long-term Plan 2018-28.

b)        note that the increase in diseased kauri within the Waitākere Ranges Regional Park has led to calls for Auckland Council to support a rāhui and closure of the park to protect the species.

c)         support the principles of the rāhui placed on the Waitākere Ranges Regional Park by  Te Kawerau Iwi Tribal Authority and Settlement Trust noting high importance of protection of the Waitākere Ranges  and that council will continue to work with Te Kawerau a Maki on the improvement of ongoing protection.

d)        endorse a modified Option Four and direct the Chief Executive to implement a programme of high and medium risk track closures commencing with those identified in Table 1 of the agenda report and  excluding authorised activities.

e)        acknowledge that modified Option Four requires additional capital and operating expenditure that will exceed current budgets.

f)         request staff to report to the Environment and Community Committee in February 2018 on options for stepped up track improvement and upgrades, public education, enforcement options and effectiveness, effectiveness monitoring, capital and operating costs associated with option four for consideration in the Long-term Plan 2018-28.

g)         note that the status and continuance of the closures, and council’s management strategy, may be reconsidered when the Regional Parks Management Plan 2010 comes up for review in 2020, without limiting any other review.

h)        that the Chair of the Environment and Community Committee make urgent representations to the Minister of Biosecurity and Minister for Conservation to advocate for increasing the investment and delivery for research, public awareness and operational practice for kauri dieback control and management.



Note:    Pursuant to Standing Order 1.8.6, the following councillors requested that their                 dissenting votes be recorded as follows:

·         IMSB Member R Blair against clauses d) and e)

·         IMSB Member J Brown against clauses d) and e)

·         Cr C Casey against clause c)

·         Cr D Newman against clause d)

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