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Home arrow Other Coastlines arrow The Rest arrow Inmates help lake rehabilitation
Inmates help lake rehabilitation PDF Print
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Other Coastlines - The Rest
Written by Dargaville News   
Monday, 26 February 2007

Inmates from Northland's only prison are helping grow thousands of native plants designed to improve the health of the region's biggest lake.

Lake Omapere provided drinking water for nearby Kaikohe until the mid-1980s when a large algal bloom made it unusable.

The Lake Omapere Trust, landowners, the Northland Regional and Far North District councils and the Conservation Department have improved the lake's health by various means, including fencing and restoring native vegetation around its margins.

Planting and fencing helps keep stock out of the lake, minimising further sediment and nutrient input into its waters, as well as providing valuable habitat for native birds and other species, says Kate Banbury, a land management officer with the regional council.

Planting is being boosted by the efforts of about 10 inmates from the Northland Correctional Facility, known as Ngawha Prison, she says.

About a quarter of the 10,000 knee-high native kanuka and harakeke (flax) grown by inmates will be planted at the lake this year.

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