Size: 3430 hectares
The KMA-Piggots biodiversity focus area is located within an extensive tract of native forest in the Hunua Ranges. It is administered by Auckland Council.
Mount Kohukohunui, the highest point in Tāmaki Makaurau / Auckland at an elevation of 688 metres, is included within this biodiversity focus area.
The land is deeply dissected hill country with close-set valleys, steep slopes and narrow ridges. The soils are made up of uplifted sedimentary siltstone, sandstone and argillite rock.
The forest is a mosaic of mostly tawa forest (WF13) with abundant kohekohe. The vegetation surrounding the top of Mount Kohukohunui is the only example in Tāmaki Makaurau of rimu-tōwai forest (MF24). This ecosystem includes submontane species uncommon in Tāmaki Makaurau including:
- mountain cabbage tree
- mountain horopito
Hebe, wharariki flaxland and rockland (CL6) is found on the steep rocky bluffs here. Few examples of this ecosystem are found in Tāmaki Makaurau. At lower elevations, there are patches of both taraire-dominated forest (WF9) and regenerating scrub and forest with kānuka and mānuka (VS2 and VS3).
A successful and ongoing animal pest control programme was established in 1994 to protect the last pair of kōkako left here. It now provides protection to over 100 kōkako breeding pairs, as well as many other native species including:
- pepeketua (Hochstetter’s frog)
- toutouwai (North Island robin)
- miromiro (tomtit)
- pekapeka-tou-roa (long-tailed bat)
- korimako (bellbird).
Volunteers play a crucial role in the ongoing success of this project.
Hebe, wharariki flaxland and rockland ecosystem (CL6)
This ecosystem is strongly influenced by environmental conditions such as high rainfall, earthquakes and soil moisture. It includes a mosaic of vegetation communities including lichens, herbs, grasses, sedges and low forest species.
Mild forest ecosystem
Rimu, tōwai forest ecosystem (MF24)
This mild forest ecosystem, which can withstand high levels of moisture and wind exposure, occurs on high ridges, hill-slopes and plateaux.
Kānuka scrub and forest ecosystem (VS2)
Found throughout New Zealand, kānuka dominated forest establishes readily after fire. It's diverse range of flowering and fruiting shrubs and trees provide habitat for a wide range of invertebrates, birds and lizards.
Mānuka, kānuka scrub ecosystem (VS3)
This ecosystem is abundant in the Waitākere Ranges and on Great Barrier Island. It establishes after disturbance events, such as fires. It occurs across a wide range of soils, altitudes and latitudes and provides habitat for many native fauna.
Warm forest ecosystem
Tawa, kohekohe, rewarewa, hīnau, podocarp forest ecosystem (WF13)
This warm forest ecosystem occurs on inland hill country where kauri is absent. It is home to a wide range of common and threatened fauna. In Auckland, species such as kōkako thrive in this ecosystem where pest animal control is undertaken.