Welcome and kia ora to our new initiative. Site being developed as of Dec 2017.

Biodiversity is the variety of life on earth comprising all plants and animals and the ecosystems that support them.

Biodiversity forms the foundation of the vast array of ecosystem services that critically contribute to human well being.

“It seems to me that the natural world is the greatest source of excitement; the greatest source of visual beauty; the greatest source of intellectual interest. It is the greatest source of so much in life that makes life worth living.”
― Sir David Attenborough

The Aspiring Biodiversity Trust intends to protect, restore and enhance indigenous biodiversity whilst raising awareness of the importance of the natural world.

Our current projects focus on the Makarora Catchment (Part of Mt Aspiring National Park) and the threatened species it supports (Makarora Catchment Threatened Species Plan).

The Makarora Catchment and its associated tributaries (Rivers the Blue, Young and Wilkin) encompass a plethora of threatened species of conservation concern within a diverse assemblage of important habitats unique to New Zealand.

Makarora River
Makarora River looking towards the Wilkin confluence

The habitats and species associations within this environment include; braided river as essential breeding sites for endemic wrybill, black-billed gull, black-fronted tern and banded dotterel. Below, is the first 2017/2018 wrybill fledgling (a vulnerable threatened species endemic to New Zealand which is dependant on braided river habitat to complete its lifecycle) identified from our braided river bird monitoring programme for Makarora River (Dec 2017).

Wrybill fledgling, Makarora braided river habitat Dec 2017

The pristine rivers of the Blue, the Young, the Wilkin for whio/blue duck.The Southern Alps as core territory for rock wren and kea. The diverse beech/podocarp forest for kaka, mohua and long-tailed bat.

Juevenile kea looking over the Crucible Basin toward Gillespie Pass

These species need our help and the help of future generations.


Thank you for visiting!

All text and images by Aspiring Biodiversity Trust unless specified. ABT ©

Partners, Sponsors, and Supporters

Here we wish to acknowledge our partners, sponsors, and supporters – please support them…

Orc logo
Discover more about the Otago region, the Otago Regional Council and the councillors who represent you
Braid logo NZ
New Zealand’s braided rivers are networks of ever-changing channels weaving between islands of gravels. They are home to many species of birds, fish, invertebrates and plants adapted to live in this challenging and dynamic environment.
Support social innovation, build effective organisations and contribute to change. The Foundation model enables creation of Legacy funds in specific areas of interest, that others can then contribute and magnify impact.
Mobilising and developing environmental leaders. Regional groups involved in a range of community-led habitat restoration projects including controlling predators to restore breeding seabird populations at Mt Karioi
Provides wilderness experience tours from the Makarora River. Learn about local history, geology and biodiveristy with an informative commentary from experienced drivers


The Speight’s fund established to support not-for-profit groups working to preserve and protect Otago’s natural environment
Online database of bird observations providing scientists, researchers, amateur naturalists with real time data about bird distribution and abundance.
Philanthropic organisation which applies its Trust funds for charitable and other purposes which are of benefit to the community.

Wanaka suppliers of outdoor equipment and optics