TAHI ESTATE Saturday June 13th 10:30am (with a rain check to Saturday June 20th)
Pataua North Road, Pataua North, Whangarei.
A Conservation Estate with Economic Backbone
A decade ago two Auckland academics saw the potential to turn a rundown coastal cattle farm near Whangarei into an eco sanctuary. John and Anne removed the roaming cattle and converted the 540 hectares into a bee farm and conservation estate. They run three thousand hives and export manuka honey to a number of countries. Two hundred and fifty thousand native trees have been planted, wetlands created, and birds have been encouraged back with extensive pest control. Now Tahi Conservation Estate is home to 69 bird species, with many of them rare or threatened. Dr Craig says he was keen to access pateke, or brown teal and was told it would take three years to get approval. He says “within six months they’d arrived by themselves, a far better solution.” The property which once employed one person, now supports over a dozen staff including bee keepers and a pest controller.
John says another aim of Tahi Estate was to show it was possible to make money from conservation and while honey is their main income, visitors also can pay to stay on the farm, or walk over the 35 kilometres of track. Tahi has joined an international group called The Long Run Initiative. John says “it has a business model of the four “c’s”, we all must succeed at conservation, community, culture and commerce, and we are audited on those.”
From Country Life on 27 Mar 2015 (Radio New Zealand)
Hear the audio here http://bit.ly/1HERA3I
If you want to carpool, meet at 9:30am in the carpark on the NW corner of Hatea Drive and Dent St intersection, tucked below the hill and across Hatea Dr from the river.
If the weather is not suitable, a decision will be made on the Friday morning to postpone till the following Saturday, so keep an eye on your emails.
Where: 1824 Pataua Nth Rd, Pataua Nth, Whangarei.
Take Whareora Road off Mill Road out of the city.
Whareora Road becomes the Pataua North road.
Continue past the Whareora Hall and pass through the tiny settlements of Tahere and Hora-hora – total distance from the city of approx 30 km.
As you approach the outskirts of the Pataua North settlement you will see signs for the Tahi Estate. Park in the area at the Honey Processing shed where we will meet for the talk. It takes at least 30 minutes from Mill Road.
Bring: lunch, a drink, and anything else you might need for an interesting day out in winter.