Trust to help endangered fish species

Otago Daily Times
1 February 2014

A newly-formed trust says it hopes to achieve ”on-the-ground conservation gains” for some of New Zealand’s most endangered freshwater fish – some of the rarest of which can only be found in Otago.

The Working Waters Trust was set up with the aim of raising the profile of endangered fish and there would be a particular focus on the country’s most endangered galaxiid species (also known as whitebait), which were concentrated in Otago, Southland and Canterbury, trust director Lan Pham said.

Ms Pham, who formerly ran an Otago-based freshwater education programme for the Department of Conservation (Doc), said helping to form the trust with like-minded people with a love for New Zealand’s native freshwater fish and ecosystems was a labour of love.

”We saw the department was moving towards a real focus on supporting community-based conservation initiatives and knew that if we could work together as a partnership we could reach a wider community base, source our own funding from enthusiastic businesses and organisations and essentially achieve more grass roots conservation gains.

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