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Tiritiri Matangi, an island in the Hauraki Gulf, is world-famous as an open sanctuary for endangered birds (eleven species of rare and endangered birds plus the tuatara have been successfully translocated there so far). It is also a world-leader in using volunteers for a revegetation project. Many Aucklanders know the island for the distinctive lighthouse which has operated at the approach to the harbour since 1865. Thousands of people visit the island every year (33,000 in 2003) to enjoy the natural environment and learn about the flora and fauna. However, this has only been possible in recent years as up until 1984 the island was almost devoid of vegetation, having been farmed for many years. This book provides the definitive history of Tiritiri Matangi from early Maori occupation, through to the remarkable story of the restoration of the natural vegetation and birdlife. During the ten-year period 1984-1994, volunteers planted 280,000 trees and they continue to supply most of the man-and-woman-power to run the island which is run by them in partnership with DOC.