Landsborough Station purchased for national park

  • Chris Carter

The Nature Heritage Fund has purchased Landsborough Valley Station within the South West New Zealand/Te Wahipounamu World Heritage Site in South Westland, Conservation Minister Chris Carter announced today.

The station encompasses 519 ha of freehold land and grazing rights over more than 1370 ha of valley flats. It has been bought from a private company, Three River Holdings, and cost $3.2 million.

"This purchase secures public access to and full ownership of a beautiful glacial valley, which will form a magnificent addition to Mt Aspiring National Park," Mr Carter said.

"Landsborough Station lies at a meeting of rivers. From the east comes the Landsborough, from the northeast the Clarke, and from the south, the Haast which is joined from the west by the Burke River."

"The valley contains wonderful natural and mixed grasslands, lowland forest on wide river flats, rising to join the main forest landscape of the Bealey Range. It is home to a population of the threatened mohua (yellowhead), regarded as important enough to be included as one of only 11 Operation Ark sites throughout the South Island."

"In addition to adding an important area to the National Park, this purchase will resolve once and for all an ongoing problem of cattle grazing inside the National Park and World Heritage Site, with all the associated impacts on natural grasslands," Mr Carter said.

"I would like to offer my congratulations to the Nature Heritage Fund for negotiating the protection of this area. It is popular with trampers, hunters and climbers, and forms part of a very scenic view from the Haast Highway. The public will now be able enjoy it for generations to come."

"Today the world celebrates Earth Day, and what a way to do it in New Zealand by setting aside a beautiful area of New Zealand for all New Zealanders."