Battle for our Birds is a national pest control programme run by DOC to protect our most vulnerable native species.
The programme uses biodegradable 1080 applied by air over large areas of rugged terrain to knock down rats, stoats and possums. Trapping and other ground-based pest control methods also play an important part. For example, a large trap network in the Murchison Mountains protects takehē from stoats.
Success from pest control in 2014
The Battle for our Birds programme successfully stopped rat and stoat plagues triggered by widespread forest seeding in 2014. This helped protect native species across large areas from Waitutu in Southland to Tongariro Forest in the central North Island.
Preparing for pest control in 2016
Widespread forest seeding this autumn could lead to another rapid rise in rat and stoats, putting our endangered native wildlife at further risk.
Planning for additional pest control is underway but detailed sites for this year’s Battle for our Birds programme have yet to be confirmed. Our field staff and scientists are monitoring seed and pests levels. This information will be used to target pest control at native species populations most at risk.