High country (New Zealand)

High Country (New Zealand)

High country (New Zealand)

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High country is a New Zealand term for the elevated pastoral land of the South Island and - to a lesser extent - North Island of New Zealand. This terrain, which can be compared loosely with the of , high of and of , lies in the of the country's mountain ranges and tends to be land with a consisting of low rainfall, cold winters and hot summers. Livestock farmed in these regions include and - increasingly - and , and a major ground-covering plant of the area is .

Regions of New Zealand closely associated with the high country include Central Otago and the Mackenzie Basin in the South Island, and parts of the North Island Volcanic Plateau. Much of the land is at a high altitude (hence its name), with the majority of the high country being more than 600 metres (2000 feet) above sea level.

Some high country stations grazed by leasehold farmers are up for tenure review, a process of turning it into freehold or conservation land. A number of conservation issues affect the high country, including wilding conifers, hieracium and rabbit plagues.


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