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Forest news

Forest news

Updated 12 May 2017 11:26am

Key Native Ecosystem Plan for Akatarawa Forest

A Key Native Ecosystem plan sets out the management activities that will be carried out to address threats to biodiversity at sites managed by GWRC as part of the Key Native Ecosystem (KNE) Programme. The KNE Programme includes sites that represent a full range of native ecosystem types with significant biodiversity values across the region. Management activities at these sites aim to protect and restore these important remnants of our natural heritage.

Key Native Ecosystem site

Akatarawa Forest includes some large areas of high biodiversity value and these areas comprise one of GWRC’s Key Native Ecosystem sites. The Key Native Ecosystem Plan for Akatarawa Forest describes the values and threats for this site, as well as the management activities GWRC is planning to carry out.

The KNE site at Akatarawa Forest includes all of the native forested areas within the Park which is located in hill country at the southern end of the Tararua Ranges north of Upper Hutt. The KNE site’s large size, diversity of forest types and wetlands are some of the features that make this site so special. It also supports a range of threatened species including Kirk’s daisy, large-leaved milk tree, red and scarlet mistletoes, New Zealand falcon, red-crowned kākāriki, torrentfish and the rarely observed lamprey.

With weeds, pest animals and the adverse effects of human activities posing ongoing threats to the area, GWRC is undertaking a long-term commitment to ensure that this Key Native Ecosystem’s values are protected and restored.

You can download the Key Native Ecosystem Plan for Akatarawa Forest and find further information about the KNE programme on our website.


Whakatikei Road - No ACCESS - Blocked with fallen tree

Tree down on the Pram Track this is blocking the Track and due to the weather this will not be able to be cleared until the week starting 18th May 2015

No recreational activities over the weekend 16/5/15and 17/5/15 due to water levels, slips and fallen trees.  Will start accessing the main roads and tracks as of Monday the 18th May 2015

Devils Staircase - Closed to all motorised vehicles up to Labour weekend October 2015

Due to recent maintenance on this track the surface is extremely wet and needs to settle over winter. Apologies for any inconvenience caused.

All enquires 027 248 1658

Woolshed Road in Valley View forest closed until further notice to all vehicles and users due to forestry operations involving tree felling, logging , road and skid construction.

Akatarawa Forest firewood collection scheme ends

The Akatarawa Forest firewood collection scheme has been disbanded, with immediate effect. The scheme, which operated for nearly 30 years, was suspended earlier this year pending an assessment of whether it met appropriate injury prevention standards.

Its closure reflects the forestry industry’s changing approach to injury prevention, which is now based on the tighter standards covered by the Health and Safety in Employment Act and the Approved Code of Practice for Safety and Health in Forest Operations.

The regional council must apply the law but does not have the resources to monitor scheme permit holders and cannot assess individual members of the public’s competency to use a chainsaw. Permits applied a range of health and safety conditions to permit holders but our rangers have observed 17 breaches of permit conditions since 2013, and it’s simply fortunate that no-one has been injured.

An alternative scheme was considered however, it was found the price that would have to be charged for the safe provision of firewood from a supervised location outside the forest park would be similar to normal market prices for firewood.

GWRC has written to recent users of the scheme to inform them of its closure. For more information on how we have reached our decision, please go to: