Part time (10-30 hrs/wk)
Short-Term (few weeks/months)
The islands that make up New Zealand combine to be one of Earth's most biodiverse regions. Sadly however, the country has one of the highest rates of species and habitat loss in the world. A 2008 survey by IUCN found New Zealand topped the list of 130 countries for the percentage of animal species threatened with extinction. Whilst considerable resources are expended in attempting to reverse these processes, with some significant successes, there remains a huge amount of work to be done if we are to prevent the loss of some of New Zealand’s iconic wildlife, habitats and natural wonders. There are a large variety of tasks you may undertake, including helping to conserve endangered wildlife, planting trees, surveying flora and fauna, participating in beach cleanups or clearing invasive species. Each of the projects gives you the opportunity to gain hands on conservation experience whilst contributing to protecting and restoring New Zealand’s unique environmental heritage.
New Zealand is geographically comprised of two main landmasses – the North Island, or Te Ika-a-Māui, and the South Island, or Te Waipounamu – and numerous smaller islands. New Zealand is situated some 1,500 kilometres (900 mi) east of Australia across the Tasman Sea and roughly 1,000 kilometres (600 mi) south of the Pacific island areas of New Caledonia, Fiji, and Tonga. Because of its remoteness, it was one of the last lands to be settled by humans. During its long isolation, New Zealand developed a distinctive biodiversity of animal, fungal and plant life. The country's varied topography and its sharp mountain peaks, such as the Southern Alps, owe much to the tectonic uplift of land and volcanic eruptions. This project is an excellent way to contribute to the conservation of this stunning and unique country.
WHAT DOES THE PROJECT DO?
With one of the highest rates of species loss in the world, a large focus of this project is to stop this. Our partner organisation supports many community run and driven sanctuaries that aim to mitigate the affects of invasive and introduced species. This includes introduced predator control to help protect New Zealand's several unique bird species. Our partners also focus on the conservation, restoration, rehabilitation and management of land including land owned by the community in the form of parks and reserves.
A range of conservation strategies, plans and tools combine with the human-power of volunteers to improve and restore the functioning of ecosystems so that natural spaces can be enjoyed by animals and people alike. Similarly, protection of waterways and coasts is particularly important for New Zealanders as they have a special connection to these areas, which provide significant social, cultural, economic and environmental benefits for all New Zealanders.
Our in-country partners work on a huge variety of projects, and with offices all over New Zealand, are one of the largest conservation organisation in the country.
WHAT WILL I BE DOING?
You're able to start your project in either Auckland (North Island), Wellington (North Island) or Punakaiki (South Island). Availability for your choice of location will need to be checked before we can confirm your choice. Although those cities may be your starting point, we cannot confirm exact locations of projects as priorities change frequently. Project locations are typically in national or state parks, publicly owned or managed land, farms, and coastal reserves. Work hours are Monday-Friday from 8am-4pm and work activities can include the following:
- Tree planting
- Erosion control
- Seed collection
- Track construction
- Floral & faunal surveys
- Habitat restoration
- Endangered species protection
- Weed control
- Walking trail construction
- Environmental monitoring