Results from monitoring rodents show that rats were knocked down to undectable or very low levels at most Battle for our Birds sites in 2016.

A potential stoat plague was stopped (by stoats eating poisoned rodents) and possums were also controlled in these areas. This allowed our vulnerable native birds and bats to survive and raise young through their spring and summer breeding season. 

Our studies of a range of birds species show improved survival, better nesting success and more young raised in areas after aerial 1080 treatment than areas without.

DOC monitors rat numbers using tracking tunnels before and after predator control operations to guage their success.

The graph below shows rat levels just before and after aerial 1080 operations in the 2016 Battle for our Birds programme.

Graph: Rat monitoring results for 2016 Battle for our Birds sites

Bar graph showing rat numbers before and after 1080 operations.

View larger graph (SVG, 301K)

The percentages are the rat tracking indices (proportion of tunnels showing rat tracking), which reflect relative rat abundance. Where the post-opertion result is blank, a zero or undetectable rat tracking result was achieved.

While rodents will reinvade from surrounding areas, in the beech forest environment rat numbers generally stay low until the next forest mast or seeding.

DOC works to continually improve its predator control operatons to achieve the best results possible. Knowledge gained from the 2014 and 2016 Battle for our Birds programmes is being used to fine-tune our predator control operations for 2017.

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