Construction has started on a 14km pest-proof fence for a wildlife sanctuary in Nelson.
After a decade of planning and fundraising a ground-breaking ceremony is being held this morning at the Brook Waimarama Sanctuary.
Four-point-seven-million-dollars will be spent to protect the 700 hectare wildlife reserve from rats, stoats and possums.
Trust chair Dave Butler said today's event was an opportunity for the Trust to thank the project's supporters.
He said volunteers had put in thousands of hours of trapping, monitoring, track cutting and weeding.
Construction on the fence is to start next month and is expected to take about eighteen months.