While our focus here at PFNZ is on predator control, it’s important not to lose sight of another essential way to help our native species thrive: habitat creation.
Loss of habitat is an increasingly common issue on private land and in lowland environments, especially for valuable bird species. It’s really important that restoration planting and boundary creation, e.g. fencing or waterways, are undertaken parallel to predator control, or even before the predator control work begins.
Obviously the type of habitat work required, and when, will vary greatly depending on your area, the species you’re trying to protect (birds, invertebrates, etc), and the intensity of predator infestation. To go into details here would result in a very long page indeed, so we suggest talking to the experts (DOC, Forest & Bird) about your particular area and what type of habitat creation and maintenance are needed.
DOC has a handy section about conservation in your garden. You should also consider the following:
• What are you trying to attract/preserve?
• Can it get there easily or are there obstacles, e.g. water or roads?
• Will it have enough food and shelter once it is there?
• What sort of habitat is needed for eating (including water), sleeping, and breeding?
• Will you need both natural and artificial materials?
• Will it be safe – e.g. are there chemicals you’re using and do you need boundaries?
• How will you monitor your success?