Ko Horouta te waka. Ko Ngati Porou te iwi. Ko Te Kiwikiwi te maunga. Ko Tangikaroro te ngahere. Ko Tangikaroro te wai Maaori. Ko Awatere te marae. Ko Matauru raua ko Ripeka Wanoa nga Matua Tipuna. Ko Tangikaroro Native Reserve te kaupapa nei.
E nga mana, e nga reo, e nga rau rangatira ma, nau mai, haere mai, ki te taiao ataahua o Tangikaroro. No reira, tena koutou, tena koutou, tena koutou katoa.
The ‘Tangikaroro Park’ project is about the establishment of a ‘Mainland Island Sanctuary’ in the northern Tairawhiti region, supporting the restoration of rare, threatened and endangered indigenous species, in order that the ecology, and Matauranga Maori (indigenous knowledge of local Maori) surrounding this ecology and passed down through time, is protected, preserved, and promoted. This mission is a collaborative effort between Environmental, Ecological, and Mana Whenua interested parties.
This vision began in 2006 with founding pioneer and Te Araroa local, Wiremu Wanoa, a mana-whenua of Tangikaroro Native Reserve, the site of this project. Wiremu was supported in his vision from its early conception by whanau, the local community and ecologically minded associates, especially EcoQuest. Since that time, progressive steps have been taken toward manifesting the reality of the ‘Tangikaroro Park’ vision and mission. Simply put, the Mission Statement is:
“Protecting, Preserving, and Promoting both the Ecology and Matauranga Maori mo te taiao o Tangikaroro”.
A series of visits were facilitated to Tangikaroro Park, (then known as the “proposed site of the reserve”),which included people such as:
- Hon. Damien O’Connor, (former Minister of Tourism)
- His Worship Meng Foon, (Mayor of Gisborne)
- Rick Mansell, (Economic Development Manager, Gisborne District Council)
- Mere Pohatu, (Regional Director, Te Puni Kokiri – Ministry of Maori Development)
- Tim Day (Xcluder Pest Free Fencing)
- Malcolm Piper, (Queen Elizabeth II Trust)
- Murray Palmer (Nga Mahi a Taiao Gisborne)
- Jono Clarke (Eco Quest Education Foundation)
- David Wallace Maungatautari Mainland Island 7 Reserve.
- Bruce Pulman HEB Group.
- Bob McConnel local historian.
- Ranui ToaToa Nga Whenua Rahui.
- Students from The University of NewHamshire USA.
- Steve Sawyer Ecoworks Gisborne.
- Sandy Ormison Geologist Ormison Associates.
- Several keen and interested locals
- In addition to many other key biodiversity restoration and sustainable energy industry representatives.
The scope and vision of the ‘Tangikaroro Park’ project and these collaborative meetings were well reported in the media. Te Puni Kokiri, Ministry of Maori Development, was then enlisted to provide logistic support. This was to assist in developing a broad initial plan and set of potential time-lines for the overall ‘Tangikaroro Park’ project concept, and a detailed assessment of the specific restoration requirements of the Tangikaroro Ecological environment.
To these ends, Murray Palmer, Principal of natural resource consultants Nga Mahi Te Taiao, was asked to collate details of the project, including the ecological and planning contexts, and develop these into a format that could be utilized to provide guidance in implementing the Mission and Vision.
The outcome in 2007 to 2008 was a range of site visits to ‘Tangikaroro Park’ and consultation by Murray Palmer and his team who then provided a detailed ecological survey and biodiversity assessment of the then proposed ‘Tangikaroro Park’.