Predator control in the Roaring Meg Ecological Area (RMEA)
This is the newest project of the PWT and is to become the main focus for the next few years. During the summer of 2014/15 we will be establishing approximately 40 km of new stoat trap lines throughout the 3600 ha RMEA. This is in order to offer ecosystem wide protection so that native species will be aided in their recovery without hands on manipulative management.
We are doing this in a collaborative effort with DoC and the eventual aim is to get the 3600 ha Roaring Meg Ecological Area ‘pest free’, in order to benefit all native species that reside within. The first stage of this project will see in excess of 400 stoat traps laid in lines throughout the forest of the RMEA. We will be using DoC 200 traps in wooden tunnels designed to exclude non target species such as kiwi and weka. It is hoped that this trap network will control stoats to low enough numbers so that kiwi and whio breeding will be successful without intensive and invasive monitoring. Once trapping is under way we we may look at other options of controlling goats, rats and possums as their numbers start building up again following a TB Free NZ aerial poison operation in October 2014.