map conservation kahurangi


Backing up for the Blues

Project: Wangapeka Whio/Blue Duck Protection Programme

Date: 2013 - 2017

Client: Department of Conservation (DOC)

Location: Kahurangi National Park


The Whio or Blue Duck are naturally found in New Zealand’s wild backcountry waterways. Like many of our native birds, the Blue Duck has suffered massive population loses over time, due to habitat turbulence and predation. 

For over twenty years DOC has been working to restore Blue Duck numbers, across eight specially selected, secure sites around the country. The Wangapeka-Fyfe river catchment and security area encompasses 30,000 hectares at the top of the South Island. 


Nelmac were charged by DOC to implement and manage a comprehensive trapping system within the catchment to dramatically reduce the numbers of stoats and rats. At regular intervals for the the duration of the contract, staff were flown in to backcountry to spend shifts of three days tramping extensively to check, clean and rebait double-box traps.  

Members of the team needed to be extremely fit, capable of working alone and able to navigate through a complex catchment. Data collection of protected species was also part of their schedule. 

Looking for a conservation partner for your next project? Contact Nelmac on 0800 635 622 to learn more.

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