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Event date:
Event location:

New Zealand

Event type:
Public talk
Conservation area:
North Island
South Island
Bay of Plenty
Hawke's Bay
Southland/Stewart Island
Top of the South
West Coast

This webinar will explore the future of conservation from three different perspectives.

  • Professor Mike (Michael) Bunce, the Chief Science Advisor at the Department of Conservation will talk about the future of conservation in terms of advances in technology.
  • Hamiora Gibson, aka Sam the Trap Man, an ecologist and the co-founder of the Eastern Whio Link Trust, will give his perspective based on our relationship with the whenua.
  • We also look forward to hearing from Hallé Aish, a student at the University of Waikato studying environmental science and the Kirikiritoa Hamilton facilitator at Trees for Survival. She will talk about the future of conservation from a rangatahi perspective.

This event is being hosted on Zoom. Please register to receive your Zoom link to attend 

More about our speakers

Professor Mike Bunce. Image supplied

Professor Mike Bunce

Professor Mike Bunce

Mike grew up in Ōtautahi Christchurch and studied genetics at Lincoln University, followed by a PhD in virology in Australia. Then he took his DNA skills and decided to apply them within the field of ancient and environmental DNA. He spent the next 20 years (at Universities in Oxford, Canada and Australia) extracting DNA from a wide variety of biological material – from fossils (e.g. moa bones) to sea water. Mike has published over 220 papers. In 2019, he left the University system to take up the position of Chief Scientist at the EPA but in 2020 was seconded into Aotearoa’s COVID-19 response, where he wrote science advice and policy on the pandemic for the PMCSA, MoH and ESR. In November 2023, Mike was appointed as Chief Science Advisor at DOC. Mike lives in Wellington with his family - he has two kids and a golden retriever named Freo.

Hamiora (Sam) Gibson. Image supplied

Hamiora (Sam) Gibson

Hamiora Gibson

Hamiora is a bushman, an educator, trapper, hunter, forager, botanist and fisherman. As a kaitiaki of our ecosystems he has a strong passion for our traditional mahinga kai species. He currently manages the Eastern Whio Link Conservation Project in the Upper Waioeka, working to help inspire and raise the next generation of kaitiaki. He has appeared on Māori TV and at various events and contributes to NZ Outdoor, he also speaks at conferences, schools, does bush tours and has a crew of rangatahi behind him. As a bushman Hamiora understands the management of both native or introduced food resources and what it looks like to sustainably harvest and is deeply driven to share this knowledge with future generations.

Hallé Aish

Halle Aish. Image supplied.

Hallé Aish

Hallé Aish is 19 years old with a passion for NZ conservation and ecology. She's currently studying science at the University of Waikato, majoring in ecology and biodiversity. Through volunteering, she has been presented with heaps of awesome opportunities and says she's learnt about caring for our native ecology in a hands-on way through volunteering activities – Hallé:

  • Works as a facilitator with Trees for Survival. The programme is run in schools throughout the country – kids grow native plants at their schools and plant these with councils, iwis, farmers and private landowners. Hallé is interested in encouraging more farmers into regenerative planting practices that benefit both the land and their farms.
  • Volunteers with the Pirongia Te Aroaro o Kahu restoration society as a regular baiting and species monitoring volunteer and their social media coordinator. A highlight is always the conversations she gets to have with other nature loving people while out working in the bush. She'd like to see more young people becoming involved with their local conservation groups and carry on the good work started by the older generation.

Hallé believes it’s super important to engage with the perspectives of people from all different walks of life to widen our scope and understanding of what the future of conservation might look like.

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