Associate Conservation Minister Nicky Wagner today announced three appointments and two reappointments to the Nature Heritage Fund Committee.

Jan Riddell (Winton) and Dr Gerry McSweeney (South Westland) have been reappointed to the Committee for two years.

“As a Committee member since 2001, Ms Riddell brings a vast amount of knowledge and experience to table, so it’s my pleasure to announce she has also been appointed Chairperson,” Ms Wagner says.

Susan Yerex (Turangi), Gina Solomon (Kaikoura) and Christopher Severne (Auckland) have been appointed to the Committee for three years. All terms begin this month.

“The skills, attributes and geographic spread of the new members will ensure the Committee maintains a balance of expertise,” Ms Wagner says.

“I’d like to thank outgoing Committee members Dr Les Molley, Mike Lee and former Chairperson Di Lucas, who served on the committee for eight, 15 and 27 years respectively.”

The Nature Heritage Fund helps protect indigenous ecosystems on private land through acquisitions, covenanting and management plans. To date, it has protected over 350,000 hectares of high-value conservation land, including forests, wetlands, tussock lands and coastal ecosystems.

The habitats of threatened native species such as the long-tailed bat, North Island Brown Kiwi, mistletoe and ornate skinks have been protected with support from the Nature Heritage Fund.

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