This is a story of positive changes for the natural environment in Aotearoa, New Zealand, realised in a bottom-up mobilisation initiated by a local indigenous group. Kauri are a cornerstone of Aotearoa New Zealand’s native forests, creating unique soil conditions that enable other native species to grow. They are one of the longest living tree species in the world and possess the status of a chief to the local Māori indigenous people of Aotearoa. Over the past decade, a deadly soil-borne pathogen known as kauri dieback has been slowly killing native kauri forests in the Waitākere Ranges, home to a local tribe, Te Kawarau a Maki. Our case study on kauri dieback illustrates the implications of mobilisation and co-governance, specifically regarding power issues and voice of community stakeholders in collaborative decision-making. It is an example of the tension between conservation, recreation, culture, and tourism, which can create harmful ramifications for the management of pathogens. The success in bringing everyone together to protect natural resources is analysed and described here by means of literature research and qualitative interviews with participants.

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