Soil Stability issues in the Taranaki Environment

The Impact of Agriculture on the
Taranaki soils
The Taranaki region
The Taranaki region covers 723,610 ha (3% of New Zealand).
•414,000 ha (57%) used for high intensity pastoral farming
• 2300 dairy farms (17% of all dairy farms in New Zealand)
•1150 sheep and beef farms
• 16 piggeries
• 41 poultry farms
• 290,000 ha in indigenous forest and shrubland
• 17,600 ha of exotic forest plantings
Taranaki Landuse
• Pastoral farming
• Native forest 30%
• Scrub
• Planted forest 1.5%
Agricultural impacts on soil
• Taranaki has a
wide range of soil
types from fertile,
well drained
volcanic ring plain
soils to relatively
infertile and
sedimentary based
soils of the inland
Key issues regarding Taranaki
• 92% of the region is sustainably managed
with no significant soil erosion problem
• 97% of Taranaki soils have low risk of long
term damage through soil compaction(via
pugging by cattle in wet weather.
• There have been significant landuse
changes over the past decade
• As stocking rates increase, extra
pressures are placed on the soil.
Intensification of Dairy farming
in Taranaki
Soil Erosion
• The potential for
erosion in the inland
hill country is
naturally high and
can be accelerated
by land
• Many ‘at risk’ areas
are being retired or
planted in plantation
Landuse changes in the
Taranaki hill country
Managing Erosion prone hill