QEII National Trust helps landowners protect significant natural and cultural features on their land, in perpetuity.
This protection is achieved through ‘open space covenants’ – or voluntary agreements between the landowner and the Trust. Each covenant is registered on the title of the land and, once in place, is binding on the current and all subsequent landowners. The landowner retains ownership and management of the land.
The Trust has regional field representatives located throughout New Zealand who offer advice and assistance to anyone interested in establishing a covenant. The reps also regularly visit each covenant (usually every two years) to monitor its condition and to assist the landowner with management advice and support. Funding assistance may be available in a number of ways including fencing costs, rates relief, weed and pest control, and restoration planting.
As at 1 March 2005, over 2000 covenants had been registered, protecting more than 70,000 hectares throughout New Zealand including native forest, wetlands, streams, lakes, coastline, wildlife habitats, archaeological sites, rural landscapes and geological features. A further 511 covenants, covering 16,000 hectares, had been approved and were awaiting formal registration. Covenants can protect created natural areas, such as wetlands, provided they meet the Trust’s evaluation criteria.
Whilst QEII is not directly involved in the Brown Teal recovery programme, numerous covenants could be ideal for the release of Brown Teal, and Brown Teal management groups should liaise closely with QEII on this.
For more information about QEII visit: www.openspace.org.nz