Mahoenui giant weta, part of New Zealand’s iconic biodiversity. Image - Danny Thornburrow
National Outcome: Improved measurement, management and protection of New Zealand's terrestrial biodiversity, including in the conservation estate.
Much of our biodiversity continues to decline. Many of our naturally uncommon and threatened ecosystems and wetlands occur outside protected areas and face increasing pressure from agricultural intensification and other development. Invasive species cause significant widespread harm in the environment and the battle against pests and weeds is ongoing across all of New Zealand. This means that the National Outcome can only be achieved through the concerted, coordinated actions of many agencies – principally DOC, regional councils and the Sanctuaries of New Zealand network, but also through private landowners (including Māori), the primary sector and business. Landcare Research’s role is to develop the knowledge and systems to support best practice, and to work in partnership with end-user stakeholders to help make their efforts more effective and focused on where it matters most. Our Impacts are (1) the improved description, documentation of status and condition of species and communities, and (2) coordinated knowledge systems in place for stakeholders to monitor and manage biodiversity at local, regional and national levels, particularly where intervention is most needed and most effective. Research in Outcome 4 to control rabbits and to eradicate TB from wildlife vectors, primarily possums and deer, has immense co-benefits for biodiversity. Our efforts to increase the accessibility, value and utility of our Core-funded biological collections are outlined in the Informatics section.