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Introducing our new Biodiversity Advisor - Waitaki District Council

Fuseworks Media
Fuseworks Media

Council is pleased to welcome Gareth Boyt, formerly of DOC and a stint in education Te Whare Wananga o Awanuiarangi in Whakatane, to the role of Biodiversity Advisor. Gareth will work with the very successful Enviroschools programme, North Otago Sustainable Land Management (NOSLAM), support community groups, irrigation collectives and liaise with local iwi - in fact he’ll be working with any and all groups with an interest in ecological restoration.

His love of flora and fauna will bring the outdoors inside council as he champions Waitaki’s natural treasures. With an interest and passion in the natural world, particularly for Significant Natural Areas, which in our district are places that provide homes for rare and special species such as the famous hoiho or yellow eyed penguin to minute (and little- known) mountain herbs like the Coral Broom, his role will encourage public accessibility to the greener side of Planning. Informing and educating, managing the Waitaki biodiversity fund, being part of the wider communications happening in 2020 as council works through elements of the District Plan Review, Gareth is most looking forward to getting to know the district, which is significantly different from Te Urewera where he’s spent most of his adult life.

With practical knowledge in sustainable land management, he articulates one of the key things that he hopes to achieve as being, "I hope to be a positive advocate for biodiversity in the district and connect the people of the district to the land and the wonders that abound here."

With the District Plan Review underway, the Waitaki landscape will be in sharp focus as council and the community seek to understand our stewardship role for significant natural areas in the district, and Gareth will be one of the faces of this communication.

When he’s not at work, he is a home dad to a one-year-old son and a peony grower, meaning come November he’ll have armfuls of blooms.

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