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Holiday park sector joins predator free effort

March 16, 2017 Lifestyle No Comments Email Email

Hundreds of holiday parks in some of New Zealand’s most beautiful locations may soon be free of rats, stoats and possums after the organisation that represents them signed up to Predator Free New Zealand today.

Holiday Parks New Zealand (HAPNZ) and its 300 member holiday parks are forming a partnership with the Predator Free New Zealand Trust to help rid New Zealand of predators by 2050.

HAPNZ Chief Executive Fergus Brown says a predator free New Zealand is a fantastic, aspirational vision for our country that the holiday park sector is proud to champion.

“The consequences of New Zealand being rid of possums, rats and stoats will be that our wonderful native species flourish. This will have far-reaching benefits, making New Zealand an even more attractive place people want to visit. The holiday park sector is excited to be able to do its part in making it happen.

“In committing to this project, we’ll encourage domestic and international visitors to get involved,” Mr Brown says. “Natural landscapes and scenery is the top factor for influencing visitors to come here so we’ll help them connect with the vision of a predator free New Zealand.”

Predator Free New Zealand Trust Chairman Sir Rob Fenwick says the long-term campaign will pay a massive dividend to the tourism industry.

“I’m delighted and not surprised that holiday park owners see real value in this and I expect other tourism operators to join. Air New Zealand is already deeply involved in predator related conservation work with the Department of Conservation. It’s a no-brainer.

“This partnership will complement the Government’s Predator Free 2050 project that aims to eradicate predators in regions at a landscape scale.

“The battlefront is widening. We’re extending the war on predators to towns and places where lots of people live and visit.”

Holiday parks will be working in a variety of areas to contribute to Predator Free 2050, including:

  • trapping in and around parks
  • supporting predator control activities in local communities
  • encouraging a commitment to and an understanding of a predator free New Zealand from both guests and local communities.

HAPNZ will introduce an annual award in 2017 to recognise a holiday park or park team member who makes the greatest contribution to Predator Free 2050.

Mr Brown says HAPNZ will be working with members on other activities that will support this project.

“We see this as a long term commitment to a cause that really does matter.”

Tourism Industry Aotearoa Chief Executive Chris Roberts is applauding the holiday park sector for its vision.

“The tourism industry is committed to managing tourism growth in a way that is sustainable and acceptable to our communities. This involvement by our holiday parks with predator free New Zealand is a great demonstration of that commitment. We must protect and enhance our natural environment so that it can continue to be enjoyed by future generations of New Zealanders and our international guests.”

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