Kauri dieback

Find out about kauri dieback, how it spreads and how you can help protect our native forests.

An invasive disease

Kauri dieback is caused by the fungus-like pathogen Phytophthora agathidicida. It spreads with soil movement, including:

  • on footwear and other clothing and gear
  • on vehicles driven in affected areas
  • by animals – including wild pigs, stock and pets.

Trees can be infected for a long time before they show any signs of the disease. Most, if not all, trees die.


An infected kauri may have:

  • yellowing leaves
  • a thinning canopy (the leafy, top part of the tree)
  • dead branches
  • large lesions (areas of damage) near the base of the tree that bleed resin.

Infected trees may not show any symptoms during early-stage infection and some infected trees never develop trunk lesions.

There are no known treatments

In the past decade, kauri dieback has killed thousands of trees. Without any cure, the only way we can save our kauri forests is to contain the disease in its current locations and stop its spread into healthy areas.

What we’re doing about it

Controlling the spread of kauri dieback, regardless of who owns the land the kauri stand on, is critical to ensuring these trees remain standing.

The Kauri Dieback Management Programme is co-ordinated by MPI. We've got others to help us, including tangata whenua, the Department of Conservation, Auckland Council, Northland Regional Council, Waikato Regional Council and the Bay of Plenty Regional Council.

You can help stop the spread

  • Stay on marked tracks.
  • Stay off kauri roots – a kauri's roots can grow outwards 3 times further than its branches.
  • If you drive a vehicle near native trees, clean it thoroughly before and after your trip.
  • Clean all soil off your footwear and other gear every time you enter or leave an area with native trees and at every cleaning station.

Cleaning stations are installed at entry- and exit points on all major forest and bush tracks.


Yellow and black infographic showing how to stop the spread of kauri dieback

Find out more

Who to contact

If you have questions about the information on this page, email info@mpi.govt.nz

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