Te Hiku o Te Ika Dune Lakes Restoration: Ngā Roto Tapokapoka

Te Rarawa is pleased to support the Te Hiku o Te Ika Dune Lakes Restoration Project. Whilst the lakes currently targeted by the project are not located within the Te Rarawa rohe, active Te Rarawa participation and contribution to this project has been in place from the outset.

The Dune Lakes Restoration project targets the long-term restoration, enhancement and protection of four Te Hiku o Te Ika dune lakes/wetlands, specifically Waiparera, Rotoroa, Split Lakes and Wahakari. These lakes are of ecological significance to Te Hiku o Te Ika and are seriously degraded and at risk of further degradation.

Remedial work planned for the next two years includes riparian fencing, planting buffer zones, pest control, weed eradication/control, and built-in monitoring to track changes over time. The project includes an innovative education and training component which will be a catalyst for other environmental opportunities and development. It also includes a vehicle to increase hapū and iwi capacity and capability.

The Dune Lakes Restoration project takes into consideration other environmental initiatives underway throughout the rohe – with a goal to promote consistency and integration of environmental management. The intention is to link projects within Te Hiku o Te Ika, and beyond as appropriate, so that knowledge can be shared, support provided, value added, and resources used efficiently.

The two-year Dune Lakes Restoration project is part of a much broader plan to improve the Te Hiku o Te Ika environment and strengthen tribal identity and kaitiakitanga over our natural resources in the post-settlement era. It is the first phase of a long term restoration plan for all of the Te Hiku o Te Ika lakes, which number approximately 50. The project builds on a manawhenua vision for sustainable, community-led, flora and fauna restoration activities, which will improve water quality and environmental integrity, while also strengthening cultural connections with these lakes/wetlands.

Ngā Pou e Whā utilises four interconnected wellbeing pou - environmental, economic, social and cultural – to provide a holistic foundation for the development of a broader Te Hiku o Te Ika environmental strategy. Based on shared Iwi values and principles, Ngā Pou e Whā underpins and influences strategic direction and decision-making. Te Hiku o Te Ika Iwi are also collaborating with DOC who are party to the Korowai Agreement with Te Rarawa.