Jollies Brook


Irwell River


Boggy Creek


Te Waihora Lake Edge

Project Tinaku

Ellesmere Sustainable Agriculture Inc, as stewards of the land and environment, endeavours to safeguard and enhance our natural resources.

Thanks to the support from MPI’s Jobs for Nature initiative, the Tinaku Project successfully executed 60 restoration projects across Ellesmere. Since its inception in 2020, nearly 50,000 native species were planted along 14 kilometres of waterways. This effort spans 11 hectares of restoration sites, with an additional 2 hectares dedicated to wetland planting.
Our farmers have gone above and beyond, installing over 10 kilometres of fencing to protect these plantings. Additionally, they shifted back 3.6 kilometres of fencing, widened stream buffers and created more room for native revegetation.
In addition to the Jobs for Nature funding, ESAI secured support from MPI’s Sustainable Land Use Extension Services fund. This  further expanded our initiatives. Our primary focus was on empowering and educating Ellesmere landowners in sustainable land practices and to help inform and educate farmers about new environmental regulations.

Workshops and events were organised, totalling 22 activities over the two years, drawing participation from nearly 600 attendees. We also conducted over 80 surveys among ESAI members to steer the project’s direction and work plan.

Water quality monitoring was another crucial aspect of the Extension Project. We gathered and tested 150 bore water samples on members’ farms for nitrate levels. ESAI contracted an environmental consultancy firm to conduct regular surface water sampling at 10 sites along lowland streams, collecting, sampling and analysing 240 samples over two years.

Coupled with data from two groundwater testing probes which the project funded, all this information has provided a comprehensive understanding of water quality in Ellesmere.

Expanding awareness of the group and the good things happening on farms was also pivotal. A comprehensive communications plan facilitated the growth in connections between ESAI, local councils, environmental groups, schools, and the wider community.

While funding from MPI for the Tinaku Project concluded in July 2023, ESAI continues seeking alternate funding sources to ensure the continuity of this work.
For more information on what has been achieved in the three years of the Tinaku Project watch the following video.

Big plans for Tinaku autumn planting

Once again, planning is underway for another round of Tinaku…

Tinaku planting thrives in spring time

Over September and October, the Tinaku Project has continued…

Project Tinaku has been working closely with local primary schools to fund and coordinate planting days, as well as supporting Ellesmere College students into agricultural and environmental careers through a partnership with the school’s Gateway Programme.

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Creating rural local employment is a key role of Project Tinaku. So far, the project has created part-time and full time work for more than 30 people on average a month and aims to provide a pathway into jobs in agriculture and horticulture for local people.

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