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About us

Whole team pic

PFHB Field Team (Photo by Shane Diphoorn)

Predator Free Hawke’s Bay’s vision Whakaorangia Te Matau-a-Māui is about restoring and enhancing Hawke’s Bay’s environment, and the connections communities have with it.

Whānau, farmers, iwi, hapū, teachers, students, philanthropists, and government have teamed up to protect and enhance our natural taonga. The flow on effects from this mahi, are significant for Hawke’s Bay and all Aotearoa.

New Zealand's native birds, reptiles and amphibians evolved in a landscape where there were no land mammals. When humans began to arrive, they brought with them a host of predator species that our native wildlife simply wasn't adapted to survive. Even when there is good habitat, our native species continue to face significant threats from introduced species such as stoats, ferrets, possums, rats, hedgehogs and feral cats. These predators can also pose a threat to livestock and cause severe economic loss for farmers.

What we do

Predator Free Hawke’s Bay works together with landowners and communities to protect and enhance native biodiversity. As a lot of land in Aotearoa is privately owned, we need to work together to make a difference to our biodiversity. This is where we come in. Our projects are integrating biodiversity restoration into business-as-usual primary production landscapes in ways that deliver economic, social and environmental outcomes.

By protecting private land through predator control we also look after our conservation land. It‘s only when we work together for conservation that we have greatest chance of significant, long-term biodiversity recovery across New Zealand.

Our goal over the next few years is to implement a region wide programme eradicating possums from our landscape, allowing our native species to thrive and using funding to control other predators.

We collaborate with a number of partners to drive large scale habitat restoration and outcomes for biodiversity. Joining forces with organisations working across multiple spaces allows for a truly transformative approach to restoring our environment.

The Predator Free Hawke’s Bay team is made up of staff and volunteers from different organisations based in Hawke’s Bay and around the country.

Our Journey towards a Predator Free Hawke's Bay


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    Boundry stream

    1996 – Boundary Stream Scenic Reserve established as a Mainland Island.
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    Animals Mammals Possums

    2001 – Planned regional rollout of possum suppression begins with first Possum Control Area (PCA) formed (Baker One).
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    First area to transition from TBFree NZ to PCA programme.

    2003 – First area to transition from TBFree NZ to PCA programme (Tikokino).
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    342 000ha in the PCA.

    2006 – 342 000ha in the PCA. Survey undertake by Lincoln Agricultural Economic Research Institute showed 83% of landowners supported the implementation of PCAs.
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    Cape Sanctuary install predator proof fence.

    2007 – Cape Sanctuary install predator proof fence.
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    Urban Possum Control (HuB) programme starts on Napier Hill.

    2009 – Urban Possum Control (HuB) programme starts on Napier Hill.
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    Poutiri Ao ō Tāne.

    2011 – Poutiri Ao ō Tāne - first landscape scale collaborative restoration project in Hawke’s Bay (8800ha).
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    First kākā translocation to Poutiri Ao ō Tāne.

    2012 – First kākā translocation to Poutiri Ao ō Tāne. Now they are breeding successfully.
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    PCA initial control

    2013 – PCA initial control completed over 95% of rateable land in Hawke’s Bay.
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    Tītī chicks translocated to Poutiri Ao ō Tāne.

    2013 – Tītī chicks translocated to Poutiri Ao ō Tāne – most inland site for seabird translocations. Four translocations followed between 2013-17.
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    Urban Possum Control programme (HuB)

    2015 – Cape to City project launches – the second landscape scale collaborative restoration project in Hawke’s Bay (26 000ha).
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    Urban Possum Control programme (HuB)

    2015 - Urban Possum Control programme (HuB) wins Air New Zealand Excellence Award for Environmental Impact. 400% increase in Tui. 300% increase in Bellbird.
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    First Backyard Biodiversity School programme

    2015 – First Backyard Biodiversity School programme runs as part of the Cape to City project.
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    March 2016 – Hawke’s Bay Biodiversity Strategy launches.
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    Predator Free 2050

    July 2016 – Government announces launch of Predator Free 2050.
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    January 2017 – Reserves are returned to hapū and gifted back to the people of Aoteaora (including Boundary Stream, Bellbird Bush and Opouahi).
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    Contractor filling bait stations

    2017 – PCA programme covers 700 000ha with an average of 2.3% RTC (Residual Trap Catch – measure of density of possums) across all PCAs.
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    Planting over 250 000 native plants.

    August 2017 – Cape to City completed planting over 250 000 native plants along the Maraetōtara river.
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    Cape to City initial predator control completed

    2017 - Cape to City initial predator control completed.
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    Toutouwai/robins released

    2017 – Toutouwai/robins released on the Maraetōtara plateau – the population is now self sustaining.
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    eit mou

    September 2017 – Cape to City signs MOU with EIT to enable a strategic approach to educating for the environment.
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    Tītī and korure adults return to Poutiri Ao ō Tāne.

    December 2017 – Tītī and kōrure adults return to Poutiri Ao ō Tāne – providing promise for colony establishment.
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    2017 – First teacher professional development workshop.
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    hikoi planting

    2018 – First Hikoi Tutuki to Lake Tutira to learn about the cultural significance of the lake and to do some native planting. Several Hikoi in other locations have followed.
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    Launch Branding

    2018 – In a first for New Zealand, possum eradication and predator control areas are added to the Regional Pest Management Plan.
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    Predator Free Māhia launches

    2018 –Predator Free Hawke's Bay launches including the Whakatipu Māhia - Predator Free Māhia project with $1.62m backing from Predator Free 2050 Limited.
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    Possum eradication across Hawke’s Bay begins

    2022 – Planned regional roll out of wide scale predator control and possum eradication across Hawke’s Bay begins.


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