What's So Important?
The Manawahe Ecological Corridor is so named because the remnants of natural habitat between Lake Rotoma and the coast form a continuation of the diverse ecosystem types that can be found across this 300m altitudinal range.
The Manawahe Ecological Corridor is the only forested corridor that exists between the Rotorua Lakes and the sea and one of the few examples left in New Zealand. The area protected in the lower reaches of the Corridor represent just 1% of the ecosystem type that was found on the Rangitaiki plains before they were drained for farming. This makes its connectivity to the consecutive ecosystems in the corridor all the more important by allowing the movement of certain desirable species. For example native birds use these corridors to access food supplies that vary with the season. Many native birds in the corridor (e.g. kokako) are not well adapted to crossing large areas of open farmland. The short distances between the blocks of forest cover within the Manawahe Ecological Corridor make it easier for these birds to expand their range.
The important landscape features within the Manawahe Ecological Corridor have been recognised by both district and regional councils. As early as 1990 it was identified as a ‘significant ecological corridor’ (Beadel et. al. 1996).
The Eco Trust aims to extend the core pest control area over the entire length of the corridor.