New funding is being put into convincing farmers and landowners that wetland areas deserve their respect.
The Foundation for Research, Science & Technology has granted Landcare Research $600,000 a year for the next six years to try and get more wetlands restored.
Landcare senior researcher Matt McGlone says that over the past 150 years New Zealand has lost 90% of its wetland area to agriculture or urban development.
He says the project will look at getting farmers and landowners to value wetlands as much as they value the rest of their land.
Dr McGlone says the project is aimed at lifting the area and number of wetlands being restored by 15% by 2016.