We have built Mahana to give people an opportunity to relate to their natural environment. We are committed to a goal of sustainable tourism which to us means protecting our environment, encouraging the growth of the forest, the bird populations and the marine creatures and limiting our impact on our natural surroundings. Our environmental protection work has two main paths:

Over the last 150 years the land at Mahana has been logged, burned, put into pasture and grazed by sheep. Logging and burning of land and the establishment of pasture destroyed the forest, which in turn, reduced the bird life because of lack of habitat, and also affected marine life through siltation of the sea from runoff and erosion. Since our purchase of Mahana we have committed to regenerating the native forest by:

  • Moving from farming to native forest protection.
  • Planting native trees on our land – over 1,000 have been planted in the last five years.
  • Undertaking extensive pest control work particularly on opossums and wild pigs.
  • Removing weed climbers and trees which slow the growth (and kill) the native forest.

At Mahana we are lucky enough to have one of the world’s few remaining populations of Powelliphanta hocstetteri bicolour – one of the giant New Zealand land snails and we work hard to enhance and protect them. They spend their days well hidden in the undergrowth and we often find empty shells in the garden. Sometimes we are fortunate enough to meet one out for a walk on a misty morning.

Our aim is to have as small a footprint as possible. We have constructed an environmentally friendly Lodge, well insulated, warmed by the sun, and heated by a log fire to reduce our energy usage. We also work to reduce our impact on the land by:

Growing as many fruit and vegetables as we can – organically and spray free. The other produce we use is sourced locally where ever possible.

  • Producing free range eggs.
  • Making our own compost.
  • Reducing and recycling our rubbish.
  • Utilising our waste water for forest growth.
  • Conserving our water as much as possible.
  • Practicing conservation fishing – take only enough for your dinner that night.
  • Providing a simple uncluttered environment.

Our vision is to see the health of the forest, land and seabed around Mahana restored so that the birds, insects and marine creatures are once again here in abundance. We want our grandchildren’s children to enjoy a Mahana as it was 150 years ago.

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