In 2019, Pan Pac purchased the Fisher block (total area 298ha), located just north of our Whirinaki mill. The Fisher block includes approx 68ha of well-established indigenous (native) forest. We partnered with Hawke’s Bay Regional Council and the Queen Elizabeth II National Trust (QEII) to place the reserve into a secure QEII covenant, under the name Pakurātahi Bush.
While Pan Pac will maintain ownership of the land, the QEII covenant ensures Pakurātahi Bush is preserved for future generations. In June 2021, Pan Pac received funding approval through the Government’s Jobs for Nature Fund to fence Pakurātahi Bush and plant an additional 12 ha of native plants on bare land areas to speed up restoration.
Pakurātahi Bush is unique for Hawke’s Bay given the forest’s age and previous protection from animal livestock and pests. For these reasons, the native tree population mixes of kahikatea, mataī, tītoki, karaka and kānuka hold particular ecological and local cultural importance. With the rare species available, Pakurātahi Bush will allow seed and plant nursery opportunities to assist in local and national programmes of native forest regeneration.
Currently, earthworks are taking place to make way for the deer fence that will be erected this summer.
Kaumātua from Maungaharuru Tangitū Trust are also supporting the development of a storyboard detailing the history of the Pakurātahi area.
The establishment of this reserve is aligned with Sustainable Development Goal 15 – Life on Land.