Archived content: This media release was accurate on the date of publication. 


Seven years of community work were recognised this afternoon at the formal celebration of Central Energy Trust Wildbase Recovery, New Zealand's first specialised wildlife rehabilitation centre.

Date:  05 October 2018 Source:  Wildbase Recovery

The Minister of Conservation Hon. Eugenie Sage, Vice Chancellor of Massey University Jan Thomas, MP for Palmerston North Minister Iain Lees-Galloway, Mayor of Palmerston North Grant Smith and Kaumātua from Rangitāne o Manawatū were amongst 200 sponsors, stakeholders and supporters that gathered in the Victoria Esplanade to celebrate the new $6.4 million facility.

Chair of the Wildbase Recovery Community Trust Roger Kennedy says people don’t often realise that even our common native birds are rare by world standards, and this is why Wildbase Recovery is so important.

“Massey University’s Wildbase Hospital is New Zealand’s only dedicated wildlife hospital for the medical and surgical treatment of native wildlife, with 50 percent of animals treated at the hospital being threatened or endangered species.

“Wildbase Hospital is a fantastic facility, but it does not have the full rehabilitation facilities required to make sure the animals are strong enough to return to the wild. As a result, wildlife have been held in hospital for longer than ideal. This is where Wildbase Recovery comes in – with specialised rehabilitation aviaries and pools where recovering birds can become ambassadors for their species.”

Minister of Conservation Eugenie Sage says what has been achieved in such a relatively short time frame is nothing short of remarkable.

“Central Energy Trust Wildbase Recovery has captured the hearts of the community. This might be the end of the construction of the centre, however it is just the beginning of the phenomenal impact that this centre will have – connecting generations of New Zealanders with the conservation of some of our most endangered species.”

The centre also includes the bilingual, interactive Powerco Education Centre – which tells the stories of the recovering wildlife, resident animals, Rangitāne o Manawatū and conservation insights.

Palmerston North City Council Mayor, Grant Smith says he is particularly proud the centre is completely bilingual.

“This centre reflects the partnership our council has with Rangitāne o Manawatū, and our bilingual commitment within council. Central Energy Trust Wildbase Recovery will provide te reo Māori speakers and learners with a full immersion experience – something we think is extremely important for a centre with such an important kaupapa.”

“This project has also received significant engagement and support from our community. There have also been many individuals who have worked for many years towards making the original vision a reality and we’re indebted to them.”

Central Energy Trust Wildbase Recovery is owned by Palmerston North City Council and co-managed with Massey University’s Veterinary School, working alongside Rangitāne o Manawatū, DOC and community supporters.

The centre is currently going through a commissioning period and is due to open to school groups next term. For more information head to the Wildbase Recovery Facebook page.


Lizzie Guest, Communications Advisor for Wildbase Recovery Community Trust
Mobile: +64 27 539 6766

Nicole Sutton, Senior DOC Community Ranger/Supervisor
Palmerston North Office, Manawatu District
Mobile: +64 27 539 6766

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