Kapiti Island stoat search continues
Archived content: This media release was accurate on the date of publication.
IntroductionAn extensive search of Kapiti Island has not yet uncovered any sign of a stoat spotted on Kapiti Island on 11 November.
Date: 22 November 2010
An extensive search of Kapiti Island has not yet uncovered any sign of a stoat spotted on Kapiti Island on 11 November.
DOC staff have laid out and are regularly checking a series of tracking tunnels and traps baited with fresh rabbit meat, said Colin Giddy, Kapiti Wellington Area Programme Manager Threats.
A tracking tunnel used to detect
the presence of pests
A specialist mustelid detection dog and handler will be arriving on Kapiti Island this week to help verify the presence of a stoat. It is expected to be sniffing and tracking for up to four days over the 1965 hectare island, an internationally renowned wildlife sanctuary.
The specially-trained dogs are able to detect mustelid scent and indicate this to their handler, Mr Giddy said.
A long-term operational plan is being developed by the department to deal with the threat, with the DOC island eradication advisory group and other experts helping to determine the best way forward.
“This will be an ongoing campaign that will probably not be won overnight,” Mr Giddy said
Stoat spotted at Paremata
“We have received great support from the private landowners at the north end of Kapiti and the Waiorua Trust, and we have asked members of the public to notify us if they see signs of dead birds or sightings of the stoat.”
While it is not thought that the stoat arrived in anyone’s personal belongings, the department is taking the opportunity to ask visitors to the island to remain vigilant in ensuring that insects, mice, rats or other animals do not stow away in bags. Visitors to the island must inspect their bags, clothing and shoes for potential hitchhikers, including seeds and foliage from weeds, before departing for the island.
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