Track to Tane Mahuta to be closed for tree's protection

8:58 am on 4 April 2017

The walking track to Northland's famous kauri tree, Tane Mahuta, is closed to tourists this week while DOC installs more protection for the forest giant.

Tane Mahuta

Tane Mahuta Photo: 123RF

Announcing the temporary closure, Conservation Minister Maggie Barry said kauri dieback disease was the biggest threat the species had ever faced and it was vital to keep the fatal spores away from them.

"People walking through a kauri forest can unknowingly spread the microscopic spores on their footwear. Nearly all infected kauri die - and there's currently no cure," Ms Barry said.

She said the track from State Highway 12 to Tane Mahuta had been turned into a boardwalk to prevent anyone leaving the path, and a footwear cleaning station would provide an additional safeguard.

The cleaning station, at the track entrance, would have brushes to remove mud from boots and shoes and disinfectant spray to kill any spores.

The track in Waipoua kauri forest will be closed until Friday while the cleaning station's set up in time for the Easter holidays.

The government has so far spent more than $20 million on measures to stop the spread of kauri dieback, building boardwalks and special tracks to protect trees from Waikato to the Bay of Islands.

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