State Highway 94, the main street of Mossburn
|Time zone||New Zealand Standard Time (UTC+12)|
|• Summer (DST)||New Zealand Daylight Time (UTC+13)|
Mossburn is a small town in the northern Southland Region of New Zealand, south of Queenstown and east of Te Anau. In 2001, it had a usually resident population of 240, consisting of 129 males and 111 females. This constituted a 12.1% decrease in population since the previous New Zealand Census of Population and Dwellings in 1996. There has been little change in the population in the 2006 census.
The town is located in a very scenic area, with the mountains of Fiordland creating a beautiful backdrop. The town's main industry is agriculture, with many cattle, deer, and sheep farms nearby. Due to the amount of deer farming, Mossburn claims to be the deer capital of New Zealand.
Mossburn's greatest burst of economic activity came as a result of the construction of the Manapouri Power Station. The Mossburn Branch railway had terminated in the town since 1887 and was the closest railway terminus to the project. Previously, the line had been served by two mixed trains of both passengers and freight per week (only freight after 4 October 1937) from Lumsden on the Kingston Branch, but with the commencement of the Manapouri project as well as other government development programmes such as agricultural expansion, one and sometimes two trains would arrive daily from Invercargill. By the start of the 1980s, these projects were complete and the railway closed on 13 December 1982. Few relics remain.
During the later part of 2006 and early part of 2007, a wind farm at White Hill was constructed with 29 turbines each of 2.0 MW. In total, it can produce enough electricity to power 30,000 homes when at full capacity. This brought further local employment and financial benefits to the district. The wind farm was officially opened by the Prime Minister of New Zealand, Helen Clark, on 8 June 2007. This project has been greatly supported by the local community and created interest in New Zealand as an example of an alternative energy resource.
Dairy farming has become another major industry of the area. Many large dairy farms have been established over the past five years, converting from past sheep and other mixed farming activities.
Media related to Mossburn at Wikimedia Commons