Supporting native wildlife restoration at Mount Bruce.

The Pūkaha National Wildlife Centre is a nature conservation reserve, established in the early 1990s as a centre for environmental education and to promote awareness of New Zealand’s indigenous wildlife. Since its establishment, substantial recovery of the forest has been achieved through pest control, reintroduction of wildlife and revegetation – largely carried out by community and iwi volunteers.

Pūkaha Restoration Project began in 2001 through a partnership between the Pūkaha Mount Bruce Board, the Department of Conservation and Rangitane o Wairarapa. In 2014, Boffa Miskell was engaged to lead a review of the project. The resulting report noted the project’s successes and made recommendations for future animal pest management and visitor experience development.

Worked with

Rigg Zschokke
Fabric Structures Ltd

Project date

2014 - 2016


Small Scale Exhibit Award | Australasian Zoo and Aquarium Association Award

Improved connections between the forest restoration project and the wildlife centre’s breeding programme were suggested and a strategy was developed. Boffa Miskell prepared a plan outlining where upgrades to the existing track network and way-finding signage could improve the visitor experience.

Boffa Miskell mapped the existing track network, which helped inform the siting of a large new aviary and connecting tracks. We produced conceptual drawings of the aviary and working drawings for the aviary environment, including visitor circulation and specialist planting for bird habitat and visitor interpretation.

Native birds, representing a number of rare or iconic species, move freely within the 40 by 20 metre forested space alongside visitors. Breeding pairs of some rare species are also resident in the aviary so that they can safely raise chicks. These young ones will eventually be released into the wild as a further step in the forest restoration project.