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About the National Programme

The National Wilding Conifer Control Programme was established in 2016 to ensure a collaborative, coordinated and effective approach to national wilding management. It includes central and local government agencies, and is supported by a wide range of stakeholder groups.

In 2016, the government pledged $16 million over 4 years for the first phase of a national control programme. This was used to tackle wilding conifers in the highest priority areas. Budget 2020 allocated further Crown funding of $100 million over 4 years to expand the National Wilding Conifer Control Programme.

For more detail about the work carried out with government funding to date, visit https://www.mpi.govt.nz/biosecurity/long-term-biosecurity-management-programmes/wilding-conifers

What’s being achieved?

Between 2016 and 2022, of the total known infestation area nationally (more than 3 million hectares), around 70% (2.2 million hectares) has now received at least one round of control work. (Repeat control and ongoing maintenance still needed to remove new growth from seeds already in the ground).  All the progress achieved means we are now preparing to start transitioning the first areas to local management, having removed infestations and done follow up control to remove emerging seedlings.

The programme partners have also built the technical capability, workforce, systems and data tools to help achieve the outcomes in the National Wilding Conifer Management Strategy (see below).

The programme has been shown to give outstanding return on investment. Independent economic analysis estimates an overall benefit-cost ratio of between 20:1 and 34:1 for every dollar invested in controlling wilding infestations and preventing the spread.

However there is still at least a million hectares of land already infested with wildling conifers that is not yet being treated, and still spreading onto vulnerable land. To see how you can help prevent the spread, visit the Controlling Wilding Pines page.

Who is involved?

The National Wilding Conifer Control Programme was established in 2016 to ensure a collaborative, coordinated and effective approach to national wilding management. It includes central and local government agencies, and is supported by a wide range of stakeholder groups.

In 2016, the government pledged $16 million over 4 years for the first phase of a national control programme. This was used to tackle wilding conifers in the highest priority areas. Budget 2020 allocated further Crown funding of $100 million over 4 years to expand the National Wilding Conifer Control Programme.

For more detail about the work carried out with government funding to date, visit https://www.mpi.govt.nz/biosecurity/long-term-biosecurity-management-programmes/wilding-conifers

The programme's governance group involves four Crown agencies, as well as representatives from community trusts and regional councils involved in wilding conifer control. The Programme Partners  are:

  • Biosecurity New Zealand, part of MPI (lead agency)
  • Department of Conservation
  • Land Information New Zealand
  • New Zealand Defence Force
  • Federated Farmers
  • Forestry Owners Association
  • Wilding Pine Network
  • Local Government (currently represented by Environment Canterbury)

In addition, a wide range of individuals and groups are working together to manage wilding conifer infestations. They include:

  • Runanga representing local Iwi and Hapū
  • community trusts
  • private land owners and managers, like farmers and lifestyle block owners
  • companies like Landcorp, corporate plantation growers, and others.

The Programme’s control operations are managed regionally, through funding agreements with Regional Councils. They are responsible for managing local pests according to their regional pest management plans, and work with the National Wilding Conifer Control Programme and local contractors to plan and carry out wilding control work within their region.

Publications from the Programme