When scientists studying the dynamics of a Norway rat colony in New York had some wild cats moved in on the experiment, they took the opportunity to see how the presence of cats and their behaviour influenced the presence and behaviour of the rats. Did rats move out when the cats moved in – or did … [Read more...] about Can feral cats limit rats?
‘Giant rats’ in our cities have hit the media headlines in recent weeks and, while ‘rats as big as cats’ are unlikely to be stalking the suburbs, there do seem to be some large and well-fed rats lurking in urban areas. What’s more – the rats that your cat brings home may not be the biggest ones out … [Read more...] about Cats vs Rats (and the big ones that get away)
Thermal squeeze: it’s what happens when temperatures rise, predators spread out to higher altitudes and their vulnerable prey species are squeezed into less-than-ideal pocket habitats at the outside edges of their range. Large, cavity-nesting birds may be particularly vulnerable to thermal … [Read more...] about Thermal squeeze could put pressure on native wildlife
A 22-year study in Tongariro Forest has followed 142 radio-tagged North Island brown kiwi through 4 landscape-scale aerial 1080 operations, covering an area of 20,000 hectares. Not only did all 142 kiwi survive the 1080 drops, but the long-term study reveals a swag of other interesting information … [Read more...] about Long-range study follows kiwi for 22 years
Peanut butter is the standard rat attractant – and apparently, they’re pretty keen on chocolate and Nutella too. But researchers at Victoria University of Wellington’s ‘Centre for Biodiversity and Restoration Ecology’ have come up with some chemical compounds that wild rats seem to rate even better … [Read more...] about New clues in the search for synthetic lures
Recently there have been several research projects looking at predators in the alpine environments of the South Island. It’s a completely different ecosystem to the much-studied lowland forest systems and there’s still a lot to be learnt about the key predator threats to our alpine species and how … [Read more...] about Latest research from Otago University and DOC investigates rock wren and 1080
To achieve a predator free New Zealand by 2050 – or by any date – the majority of New Zealand will need to back that goal. Young people in particular need to want it to happen and be engaged in making it happen. After all, it’s their future, 30 years from now, that we’re talking about. Lauren … [Read more...] about PF2050 – do young people support the goal?
Rats are bad news for nesting birds – but quantifying exactly how rat density relates to nesting success of our smallest and rarest birds is difficult for a number of reasons. They’re rare – so there’s not a lot of them to study; they are likely to live in remote locations making observation … [Read more...] about Nesting fantails balance predators and weather risks
Back in 2017, PFNZ Trust talked to Otago Zoology student Jamie McAulay about his Masters research on the diet of stoats. Well the Masters is done and dusted and Jamie’s thesis is now available online through the University’s ‘OUR Archive’ site. So what has Jamie found out? Jamie McAulay The … [Read more...] about Jamie’s thesis reveals diet preferences of alpine stoats
Monitoring is an essential part of measuring the success of a predator control programme, but monitoring methods used in forests may not be directly applicable to wetlands. Tracking tunnels may not work, for example, where water levels fluctuate significantly. It was an issue that faced … [Read more...] about Monitoring methods trialled in Whangamarino wetland