Maketu Ongatoro Wetland Society (MOWS) is involved in the conservation and ecological restoration of coastal areas surrounding Maketu, from Kaituna Cut to Waihi Harbour Wetland.

Achievements of MOWS:

  • Maketu has been declared an Important Bird Area (IBA) by Birdlife International.
  • Managing four long term Biodiversity Management Plans (BMPs).
  • Ensuring the ongoing successful breeding of the endangered Northern New Zealand dotterel population.
  • Reducing the number of mammalian pest animals on Maketu Spit.
  • Controlling most of the invasive weed species on Maketu Spit.
  • Developing an ongoing programme of replanting native species at all our sites.
  • Discovering four new or previously undescribed species of invertebrate.
  • Developing an environmental education programme with Maketu Kura, and other local schools.
  • Dunes Trust of New Zealand award for Best Ecological Restoration Project 2011.
  • Western Bay of Plenty Trustpower Community Awards – Supreme Winner 2011.
  • Western Bay of Plenty Trustpower Community Award –  “Education and Child Youth Development” 2017.

MOWS carries out a range of tasks in their work, and are totally reliant on the help of amazing, dedicated volunteers and members. They run regular working bees and work days to complete important restoration work around Maketu. They reward your hard work with sausage sizzles or coffee and muffin breaks to show their appreciation! Not to mention good company, beautiful scenery and interesting wildlife!

Projects include planting native species, removing non native plants and collecting litter. In order to allow people to assist with more specialist tasks they run training courses in areas such as chainsaw use, herbicide application, ATV/LUV driving and pest animal control. These courses are usually around two thirds funded, so they are able to keep the cost to you extremely low. Please see their volunteer page for more information.

You can also help by becoming a memberor making a donation. Please click on these links to find out more. Or you can contact MOWS to ask to be put on their email list to receive regular updates about their projects and other conservation related groups and events.

Check out MOWS on Facebook, or find out more on their website –