Protecting native species at risk

Returning species like kākā, yellow-crowned kākāriki and more kiwi to the Egmont National Park, Kaitake and Pouakai Ranges is not a distant dream, but achievable through a multi-tool approach to restoring our biodiversity as we all work Towards a Predator-Free Taranaki.

Completely removing possums and rats from the forest to prevent re-infestations is important.

In 2019, an aerial 1080 predator control operation will treat over 34,000ha of the park to significantly reduce these pest numbers.

This operation will also trial a method of aerial 1080, and use the latest trapping technology to remove possums from the Kaitake Range (around 4500ha in size).

There have been four previous operations in the national park, with the last operation completed in 2016/2017. Prior to this the park was treated in 2009/10, 2002 and 1993/94. After each operation there was a huge reduction of predators on our Mounga, which enables threatened plants and animals to successfully reproduce over the subsequent breeding season.

Aerial 1080 remains one of our best tools in protecting native taonga and is the most efficient, effective, and safest way to control predators in rugged country, like large areas of the national park. In particular, it targets all predators in their home ranges at the same time, fast. This is fundamental to the success of the project.

Monitoring will also be conducted after the aerial 1080 predator control operation to understand the reduction of pests.

Timeframe

Operations will be triggered as rodent populations reach monitored thresholds. Operations will be from March to August 2019. Finalised dates will be confirmed closer to the operations taking place.

Planning

Two separate predator control operations will run simultaneously. The Taranaki Mounga project and Taranaki Regional Council have been meeting with local hapū, iwi, community. Engagements with relevant landowners to share information is also underway.

The use 1080 requires consent of the Environmental Protection Authority (EPA) and permission from public health. The process includes an assessment of environmental effects (AEE) to safeguard the public and the environment.

What you need to know

Warning signs will be placed at all main access points to the operational area and everyone must follow the cautions on the signs. There’s no health risk when using this area if you follow these instructions:

  • Do not handle any bait or allow children to wander unsupervised.
  • Cereal baits containing 1080 are dyed green.
  • Do not hunt or take game from within a two kilometre radius of the operational area for human or pet consumption.
  • Please observe these rules whenever you see warning signs about the pesticide.
  • It is illegal to take dogs on to Egmont National Park.

Further information

E: info@taranakimounga.nz

For more information on the Zero Invasive Predator work that will be used in the Kaitake Range operation visit http:// zip.org.nz/updates/2018/10/ update-on-perth-river- valley-work-programme- november-2018

Fore more information o why 1080 is used in New Zealand, visit 1080facts.co.nz.