Whakamana te Waituna

Predator-free Waituna

During 2018 Environment Southland, supported by Living Water and the Department of Conservation, will be working with landowners on controlling a range of pest animals in the Waituna catchment.

Feral cat. Photo by Environment Southland.

As a joint effort, it will be the first of its kind in Southland and aims to support landowners to work together to control pest animals. Although it is voluntary, control of the pests will be more effective if the majority of landowners are involved as it will reduce the pests moving from property to property.

Initially farmers will be assisted to target possums, mustelids (ferrets, stoats and weasels) and feral cats. These species can have a significant impact on the economy and environment. Controlling them in the Waituna catchment will:

  • reduce economic loss to crops, pasture and trees,
  • limit the risk of Bovine Tb and Toxoplasmosis transmission,
  • limit predation of domestic chickens and waterfowl,
  • improve biodiversity,
  • support the Department’s projects to control pests on the conservation estate and protect rare native species.

Ferret. Photo by Environment Southland.

The possum control area (see map below) is now confirmed and control work will start in June 2018. The control aim is to reduce possums to less than 5% residual trap catch. The mustelid control area is being confirmed and we'll provide an update soon.

If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to contact the Environment Southland Biosecurity team.