Our Environment

Our approach to sustainability is dynamic.

For almost two decades, we have looked to science to influence our decisions, taking cues from the latest technology, the expertise of our dedicated environmental team and the land itself to work towards future-proofing the environment for generations to come. 

We want to set the benchmark for responsible land use. In 2004, we got to work establishing an environmental baseline. What state was the land in, and what needed to be done?

We started planting trees — lots of them. We created biodiversity corridors, nurtured wetlands and expanded riparian areas. We kickstarted programmes to eradicate pests and encourage native wildlife. We built our own software to improve water monitoring and efficiency.

It’s our mission to develop the best practices possible.

Wairakei Estate Toi Toi gif image on the estate

Did you know?

Our minimum riparian setback is 10 metres from the water’s edge, with the maximum extending to 150 metres. The minimum required by the government is 3 metres.

Wairakei Estate image of 2 Kotuku ngutupapa / Royal spoonbill wading birds
Kōtuku ngutupapa / Royal spoonbill.
Find them hunting for little critters in Wairakei's wetlands.
Wairakei Estate image of Mount Tauhara seen through a large planting of Toetoe
Located just south-west of Wairakei Estate, Mt Tauhara peeks through toetoe.

Explore our environment

  • Waikato

  • Wetlands

  • Biodiversity

  • Riparian Management

Wairakei Estate birds eye view of the the estate and the Waikato river
Kaimanawa Hill
Corridor from wetland
to Waikato River
Forestry for
30m setback
from awa
Waikato River
(27kms river)
Wairakei Estate birds eye view of the wetland
Trapping network - This wetland network has eradicated the likes of ferrets, stoats and rats since it began in 2017
Hauwai Wetland - Planted in 2012 with native and exotic trees, this wetland is situated on an organic farm and feeds into the Pueto stream.
Wairakei Estate birds eye view of the diverse forestry planted
Wairakei Estate birds eye view of the pasture protected from the river by the planted forestry
Shelter belts, soil conservation
areas and copses for
- These areas promote biodiversity, provide habitat and support stock husbandry.
Protected wetlands and
ecological corridors -
These  provide habitat for wildlife to migrate through water and across land.
Riparian margin -These setbacks help protect our fresh water permanently fencing out stock and preventing soil erosion with native trees.
Waikato River

Environmental Initiatives

Stay up-to-date with new and noteworthy environmental initiatives at Wairakei Estate, following along as our dedicated team works to bring our most ambitious projects to life.

We've been busy catching pests and protecting native wildlife

Monthly reports show a high possum density in our native riparian area, with hundreds caught by our expert contractors. They've also caught a few sneaky stoats and cats. Great news for the native birds and insects that inhabit there!

Wairakei Estate and Pāmu win two awards at the Ballance Farm Environment Awards

Our passionate team are proud to have taken out the Waikato Regional Council Water Protection and Waikato River Authority Catchment Improvement Awards at the Ballance Farm Environment Awards in March.

Five minutes with our conservation manager

No two days are the same for Robin Gerding, Wairakei Estate's busy Conservation Manager. Here she shares her passion for the natural world.

Why we created a community wetland

The Tahorakuri Wetland project saw pastoral farming land transformed into a protected area for everyone to enjoy.

We’re working towards a predator-free future

How do we kickstart our pursuit towards a predator-free future? We explore what the path to Predator Free 2050 looks like.

What’s happening with freshwater? Our team stays up-to-date on the latest

We attended the 2022 National Freshwater Conference, engaging with Aotearoa’s leading experts to stay informed and inspired on all things freshwater.

All the details from our annual propagation day

Students, seniors and 5,000 seedlings — the propagation project connects community and conservation for another year.

We’re forging new relationships for the future
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A new relationship agreement and ecological restoration project with Ngāti Tahu – Ngāti Whaoa acknowledges shared hopes for a sustainable future.

How our latest wānanga is building stronger ecosystems from the smallest seed

How does the small action of collecting wild seeds lead to the bigger picture of thriving ecological areas? Discover all the details from our busy day with Ngāti Tahu – Ngāti Whaoa.

Wairakei Estate sketched image of a fushcia flower.
Did you know?

We use eco-sourced seeds for riparian planting