Amazing Community Pest Control

(Published on 2nd May 2014)

In a New Zealand first, animal pest control data from community-led and DOC conservation projects has been collated to demonstrate remarkable results at a local landscape scale. The data was collated by Kiwi Coast, a project helping to establish a safe kiwi habitat in Eastern Northland.

In total, the conservation projects trapped or poisoned 11,999 rats, 8997 possums, 647 stoats and 657 rabbits in 2013 between Bream Head and Whangaroa (roughly 150,000ha).

Kiwi Coast Coordinator Ngaire Tyson says the actual impact will be far higher as most of the data is from 'trap catches' and many community-led conservation projects also use poison. In addition, one ferret kill was reported by Hupara Landcare north of Moerewa. As ferrets can quickly destroy local kiwi populations, this was a vital catch.

"The collation of data is significant as it demonstrates the collective animal pest control efforts of the many local volunteer conservation projects across Eastern Northland. Bringing all the results together shows the huge amount of effort that Northlanders are putting into removing predators and pests along the Kiwi Coast. The Kiwi Coast project is all about working together to help kiwi and other native species thrive and these results show that we are actually out there, doing that, every day.” said Ngaire

Jim Shaw, of Waimate North Landcare says the collated data provides added motivation to keep up their efforts. Jim added, “It can be hard for Landcare Groups to keep battling away on pest control, even when it’s going really well.  Being part of the Kiwi Coast and sharing results shows us that there are others out there with the same goals, doing the same hard work, and that together we can make a difference.”

Over 30 community-led conservation groups between Bream Head and Whangaroa shared their pest control results to create the recorded totals. This is the first year of operation for the Kiwi Coast, which is also a pilot project of Reconnecting Northland, a large landscape connectivity programme offering a new approach to improving the health and wellbeing of the Northland environment and its people.

Reconnecting Northland Programme Manager David Mules says the programme is a fresh approach to ecological restoration, looking at the wellbeing of the Northland environment and our communities as a whole. “Our goal is to help link people together, along with their knowledge and resources, so that we are working collectively in partnerships, rather than as individuals or groups or agencies in isolation. The implementation of the programme is being led by WWF-New Zealand and NZ Landcare Trust, and focuses on the relationship between the wellbeing of the land and its people – if the land is healthy, so are the people."

2013 is the first year such results have been collated. Annual pest control results for the Kiwi Coast will now be collected each January and it is hoped that even more landowners and projects will take part this coming year. Anyone carrying out animal pest control within the Kiwi Coast is encouraged to participate.

Reconnecting Northland is being guided by a Northland-based staff and steering group, and is supported by The Tindall Foundation, ASB Community Trust, and HSBC Water Programme.

 

For more information:

Kiwi Coast
Contact Ngaire Tyson at ngaire.tyson@landcare.org.nz or visit www.kiwicoast.org.nz to find out more or get involved.

Reconnecting Northland
Contact David Mules at dmules@wwf.org.nz or visit www.reconnectingnorthland.org.nz

 

 

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