‘Dog sweeps’ show Doc’s success with Kāpiti programmeBy Alan Tristram
The Conservation Department (DoC) says a trapping system , plus stoat detection dogs, has ensured Kāpiti Island remains free from pests.
Following the sighting of a stoat on the island in late 2010, the Department set up an extensive stoat control programme on the island.
This involved 200 traps and 480 tracking tunnels spread over the whole island, backed up by sweeps undertaken by specialist stoat detection dogs.
DoC says the most recent stoat-detection sweep was completed last week with no sign of stoats on the island. This latest sweep draws to an end a three-year stoat detection dog programme.
Colin Giddy, manager for biodiversity threats in Kāpiti and Wellington, says: “As the latest dog sweep found no evidence of stoats, we no longer need to run any more dog teams on the island as the island’s precious bird life is flourishing.
“However our extensive trapping system will remain in place to help reduce the risk of another stoat incursion on the island.
“Kapiti Island is one of New Zealand’s most important Nature Reserves and keeping it pest-free is a top priority for us. Which is why we opt for the best pest removal services to keep the island looking best”
Mr Giddy adds: “Since the sighting of the stoat in 2010, DOC has spent over $600,000 on the biosecurity monitoring programme, which included the stoat detection dog sweeps.
“By ending the cycle of dog sweeps we can make some savings on the island’s biosecurity programme.”