Monthly update June 2016
Peter F, Biodiversity Development Coordinator
We completed our winter rodent monitor in the Cell Tower/Pickfords block with the help of Liddy and the Tarawera High students.
In the last twelve months we have killed 359 pests in our trapping programme.
21 cats, 30 ferrets, 127 hedgehogs, 122 rats, 30 stoats, 7 weasels. (These are very conservative figures as trappers do not always enter results)
We still urgently need more volunteer trappers, so this needs to be a focus over the next couple of months. If you feel you could help out please contact Peter on 073049404.We have set up two new stoat trap lines using the new Victor stoat and rat traps. One is on Brent Mountfort’s property and one is on Vyrnne Gray’s block. It will be an interesting trial to see how these new traps go.
Feral cats continue to be a problem and we have had some success using possum master kill traps with 3 feral cats killed in three days.
Liddy B, Environmental Educator
The month June has been busy with various visits from the local community. The Manawahe morning tea group came for a shared lunch. All of these ladies had been to the school in earlier years. For some it was over 20 years since their last visit. We previously had a visit from Probus Ohope and they enjoyed their educational experience too. It shows that more mature groups are also interested in learning about conservation issues in our local area.
Whakatane Intermediate brought two Science for life groups on two different dates. These groups have been coming regularly now and students enjoy seeing the trees grow that they planted last year.
Five students from Tarawera High school did a four day intensive course as part of their NZQA studies. They had to “take an environmental action in their local area”. They all chose a different task and assisted each other. As a result we placed a new type of trap on Vyrnne Gray’s land, did a rat monitor in the cell tower block, removed many noxious weeds on the school grounds and planted native trees. It was a privilege to spend a very long weekend with teenagers that are so very motivated and enthusiastic!