How far might young rats disperse if they find themselves in a place with few other rat competitors? It’s an important question, with implications for deciding what surveillance is needed to detect invasions in predator-free islands, sanctuaries and ultimately, large predator-free mainland … [Read more...] about Rats on the move – how far do they disperse?
Sanctuary fences keep predators out – but they’ve also become a popular ‘highway’ for ship rats travelling around the sanctuary exterior. Rats have discovered that the rolled steel hood (designed to stop mammals climbing over the fence), also makes a great way to get around, safely out of reach of … [Read more...] about What’s happening up in the hood?
Cautious rats – bait shy and trap shy – are a problem worldwide and researchers at the University of Liverpool, UK have been looking at other ways to attract rats into bait or trap boxes. So far the research has only been carried out on lab rats and still needs to be tested in the field. But the … [Read more...] about Liverpool researchers study rat audio lures
Did you know there were once horses on the Auckland Islands? Possums were deliberately introduced too but didn’t last long. Hardly surprising. It’s a harsh environment and not remotely like their warm Australian homeland. Scientists investigating mammal predators in the Auckland Islands group … [Read more...] about Auckland Islands introductions included horses, possums, chickens
How do you detect the presence of rats and mice if they’re surrounded by a glut of natural food? If it’s a mast year and there’s a carpet of seeds on the forest floor, they just may not be interested in your peanut butter-flavoured chew cards. If there are only a few remaining rats or mice in a … [Read more...] about Detecting rodents during a food glut
Achieving Predator Free 2050 goals will take more than just a scaling-up of eradication efforts according to researchers Duane Peltzer et al from Landcare Research (Lincoln) and the University of Canterbury. They look beyond economic and technological feasibility to identify the key impediments we … [Read more...] about Identifying impediments to PF goals
The results of the latest Public Perceptions of New Zealand's Environment have just been released and, as with the previous survey in 2016, the research includes a section produced in collaboration with Predator Free New Zealand Trust and the BioHeritage Challenge, Ngā Koiora Tuku Iko, investigating … [Read more...] about Latest ‘Public Perceptions’ survey gives insight into predator control views
Now that an increasing number of our wildlife-rich - but uninhabited by humans - offshore islands are becoming predator free, the conservation spotlight is turning to some of New Zealand’s inhabited islands. But predator eradication becomes more complicated when people are living onsite. Its not … [Read more...] about Hauraki Gulf islanders surveyed on pest control attitudes
A survey of 71 islands in southern Fiordland in the summer of 2017, by researchers from Museum of New Zealand Te Papa Tongarewa and the Department of Conservation, found forty breeding colonies of three petrel species spread across 35 of those 71 islands, according to a report just published in … [Read more...] about Researchers surprised by petrel numbers on ‘refuge’ islands
Tuhoe researchers recently joined other scientists in evaluating naturally occurring toxins in native plants. Could one of those toxins provide a culturally acceptable alternative to existing rodenticides? The results of their study have just been published in the New Zealand Journal of … [Read more...] about Native plants show potential as future rat toxins