Arrowtown is a vibrant, close-knit, welcoming community and we care about the world around us. We pride ourselves on being good stewards of this stunning landscape and we're doing all we can to protect and enhance it. The natural environment has been heavily modified by humans over hundreds of years, but now residents, businesses and landowners are working together to restore it. And we're doing it in a way that balances expanding biodiversity with retaining the features that make Arrowtown special.
The Arrowtown Choppers and the Arrowtown Wilding Group have removed countless numbers of the exotic trees that were taking over the hillsides, and planting in their place non-invasive species that will do well in difficult locations and give the display of colour in autumn for which Arrowtown is famous.
Every year at spring and autumn planting days, volunteers from the Wakatipu Reforestation Trust join with the local community to plant natives at several sites around Arrowtown – Feehly Hill, Whitechapel, Bush Creek and Lake Hayes – using seedlings from the Trust's nursery at Kelvin Heights. The aim is to create wildlife corridors that attract native birds and insects, significantly enhancing biodiversity.
Predator Free Arrowtown’s trapping programme works to eradicate pest species like weasels, stoats, possums and rats. This volunteer group’s traplines extend high into the mountains to create a sanctuary for native creatures in and around Arrowtown. Local residents participate by adopting a trapline, making sure it is baited and cleared regularly.
Arrowtown is working towards SUC-free status, which will mean that eventually we send no single-use cups to landfill. Instead coffee drinkers are encouraged to stay and sit at the café to drink their coffee, or take it away in a reusable cup. Some cafés have mug libraries, while others participate in loan cup schemes.
A number of Arrowtown restaurants have their food waste collected by local resident Michael Sly, who turns it into “Arrowtown Gold” compost. It’s then donated to volunteer groups for use at community planting days, and available for purchase by locals at the gate along with mulch made from wilding conifers.
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