The Pomona Island Charitable Trust will tomorrow celebrate 10 years of restoration activity on Pomona and Rona Islands in Lake Manapouri, home to Meridian Energy’s largest hydro station.
Meridian has supported the Trust since 2007, contributing more than $48,000 from its Manapouri Community Fund.
The Trust’s efforts have seen the islands become rat and mice free, with record numbers of birds recorded on Pomona Island in 2016.
Trust secretary Viv Shaw says they’re grateful for the Meridian funding, particularly the most recent grant of $8,694 which enabled the Trust to undertake mouse eradication work on Rona Island.
“When mice were found on the island it had to stop being used as a crèche site for the critically endangered Haast kiwi,” says Viv.
“With the Meridian grant we were able to eradicate the mice and now Rona Island can once again be used as a home for kiwi chicks.”
Irene Barnes, a member of the Meridian Manapouri Community Fund panel, and one of the founding members of Guardians of Fiordland Fisheries and Marine Environment, says “they’ve consistently run the Trust for the last 10 years and it’s one of the most successful conservation efforts that I know.”
This success was recognised last month when the Trust won the Achiever award at the 2016 Southland Community Environment Awards for their work to remove rats from Pomona Island and mice from Rona Island.
Viv Shaw says “this award is an acknowledgement of the hard work put in by all of our volunteers and financial supporters over the past three years.”
Meridian’s Manapouri Community Fund chair Mat Bayliss says the company is delighted to be able to support the Pomona Island Charitable Trust.
“We believe in protecting and enhancing the natural environment for generations to come and we applaud the Pomona Island Charitable Trust on a decade of restoration efforts. We’re proud to see the success of their work.”
Meridian has made the following grants from its Manapouri Community Fund to the Trust:
- 2007 - $22,500 for the development of the Friends of Pomona.
- 2009 - $14,573.13 for the Pomona Island Restoration Project: translocation of mohua (yellowheads) to Pomona and Rona Islands.
- 2014 - $2,394 for six Uniden hand-held two way radios.
- 2015 - $8,694.75 for eradication of mice on Rona Island.
Meridian supports thriving communities across New Zealand by investing in groups and projects through its community funds programme.
Photo captions: Meridian Manapouri Community Fund panel member Irene Barnes releasing mohua on Pomona Island.
Photo Credit: Barry Harcourt.