Farm between two forests rich in rare wildlife

Dan Herries manages Taramoa Station in Puketitiri, Hawke’s Bay, a 564 hectare sheep and beef farm which lies between two significant and beautiful blocks of forest – an 800-year-old, unmilled podocarp forest known as Ball’s Clearing Scenic Reserve and Kaweka Forest Park where once-burnt faces have now regenerated with manuka and softwoods and original red … Continue reading Farm between two forests rich in rare wildlife

Farm biodiversity map highlights falcons, kākahi and glowworms

Mark and Felicity Brough have created a biodiversity map of their sheep and beef farm at Paerua near Waitomo, in the central King Country. It shows where on the farm their resident falcons are nesting, which streams have kākahi (freshwater mussels), where longfin and shortfin tuna are found and where the glowworms live. “Two or … Continue reading Farm biodiversity map highlights falcons, kākahi and glowworms

Yealands Estate adds trapping to their eco-friendly initiatives

Tara Smith is Sustainability Manager for Yealands Estate. The role is a new one – she started in May 2019 – but sustainability has been part of the Yealands vision since the vineyard’s beginnings in 2008. Recently the Yealands team have added predator trapping to their long list of eco-friendly initiatives. Each day Tara and … Continue reading Yealands Estate adds trapping to their eco-friendly initiatives

A close up image of a tūī

Alert Level 3 —what you can and can’t do

Most recently updated 12pm 28 April We are now in Level 3. We know a number of you are looking forward to getting back to your projects and checking and rebaiting your traps and bait stations. We’ve been trying to get the most up to date information so you can be clear on what you … Continue reading Alert Level 3 —what you can and can’t do

Predator control — what you can and can’t do right now

Many of you may be wondering what you can and can’t do to protect our native wildlife throughout the lockdown period. So we thought we would summarise this for you. For up to date information on the COVID-19 response see the Government website. If you are involved in backyard or community trapping while NZ is … Continue reading Predator control — what you can and can’t do right now

Elwyn Welch – a man, his bantams and a tale of takahē

Elwyn Welch was a Wairarapa farmer who loved birds. Most people have probably never heard of him, but back in the 1950s, he and his specially trained bantam hens had a vital role to play in the conservation and breeding of the recently rediscovered takahē. Elwyn and the bantams were recruited for a top-secret mission … Continue reading Elwyn Welch – a man, his bantams and a tale of takahē

Patoka dairy farmers enjoy benefits of predator control

Dairy farmers, Nick and Nicky Dawson from Patoka, near Hastings, have been going hard out with predator control in the last four years or so. They were recently deserving winners of the East Coast region Ballance Predator Free Farm Award and overall East Coast regional award. While no stranger to awards for their long-time environmentally … Continue reading Patoka dairy farmers enjoy benefits of predator control

Possum numbers surprise Canterbury farming family

Duncan and Tina Mackintosh farm White Rock Mains, near Rangiora in North Canterbury – a 1056 hectare property brought by Duncan’s great-grandfather back in 1909. Earlier this year they were Canterbury regional winners of the Ballance Predator Free Farm Award, in recognition of their predator control efforts. The farm is a mix of sheep, beef … Continue reading Possum numbers surprise Canterbury farming family

Ross and Eleanore Webber determined to beat possum come-back

Ross and Eleanore Webber farm Angus beef on a 195-hectare property at South Head, overlooking the Kaipara Harbour and have been trapping on their farm since establishing two QE II covenant blocks 15 years ago. “We’ve got more proactive in the last 2-3 years,” says Ross, “Especially trapping possums. Possums were eliminated on the peninsula … Continue reading Ross and Eleanore Webber determined to beat possum come-back

Otago groups join forces for Predator Free Dunedin

It’s the new group on the block. Predator Free Dunedin launched just a few weeks ago in early October. But while the umbrella organisation is newly formed, it’s made up of 20 well-established Dunedin volunteer groups and larger organisations representing a wealth of Otago conservation experience. “Predator Free Dunedin includes big institutions like the University … Continue reading Otago groups join forces for Predator Free Dunedin

Port Chalmers farming family helps keep ‘Halo’ free of predators

With Orokonui Sanctuary nearby and the virgin forest of the Mihiwaka Reserve bordering their sheep and beef farm, Port Chalmers farmers John and Shona Chapman along with their son Robert and his family, had some good reasons for trapping predators on their own land. “We started trapping on the farm about two years ago, mainly … Continue reading Port Chalmers farming family helps keep ‘Halo’ free of predators

Birds return favour keeping nursery pests at bay

Three generations of the Bayly family are involved in trapping predators on the family farm on the Kaipara Coast, half an hour’s drive north of Auckland. David Bayly’s parents, Don and Margaret bought the land back in 1960 and Don Bayly started actively trapping 20 years ago. Back then, there was next to no birdlife … Continue reading Birds return favour keeping nursery pests at bay

Vision for buff weka drives Motatapu Station restoration

With a vision to re-establish the once-common buff weka, Motatapu Station near Wanaka is tackling habitat restoration and predator control on an impressively large scale. Just check out the numbers so far: • 1,405,278 corrected trap nights (CTN – a ‘catch per effort’ adjustment that takes account of the uncertainty over how long an animal … Continue reading Vision for buff weka drives Motatapu Station restoration

Kiwi are longterm residents at the Harmans’ farm

The first time that someone from Northland’s ‘Kiwi Coast’ project visited Greta and Craig Harman’s Charolais cattle farm to monitor for kiwi presence, they didn’t need to scramble through bush looking for kiwi sign or stay up late playing kiwi call recordings to confirm that kiwi were present. “There were fresh kiwi footprints in the clay … Continue reading Kiwi are longterm residents at the Harmans’ farm

Towards a Predator Free Taranaki

A large-scale predator project, the biggest of its kind in New Zealand, was launched in Taranaki today supported by more than $11 million from the Government. Taranaki aims to be the first predator free region in the country under the project, called Taranaki Taku Tūranga – Our Place, Towards a Predator-Free Taranaki and is led … Continue reading Towards a Predator Free Taranaki

Increasing biodiversity is a priority at Craigmore Station

Every year David Bielski, manager of Craigmore Station in South Canterbury, plans to spend $50,000 of the station’s budget on fencing, planting trees and labour to increase biodiversity on the property. An impressive 51 hectares of land already consists of native plant species and is under various QE II covenants and game keeper John Brownley … Continue reading Increasing biodiversity is a priority at Craigmore Station

McGillivrays’ orchard is ‘rat farm’ no longer

When Wilson and Barbara McGillivray announced to friends that they were buying an avocado orchard, the response from one friend was less than enthusiastic. “He said ‘So you’re going to live on a rat farm!’” recalls Wilson. “Rats love avocados.” Undaunted, the McGillivrays went ahead anyway and bought Awatea Orchard in Katikati. Having previously lived … Continue reading McGillivrays’ orchard is ‘rat farm’ no longer

Tangihua Lions Lodge expands its outdoor programme to combat predators

Gerald Mannion has a story about the ‘moment of truth’ when he and fellow Tangihua Lions Lodge trustees realised just how much damage introduced predators had done to their forest. But first, a little background… Thirty years ago, the Whangarei Mid Western Lions, a bunch of local farmers, decided that all young people should have … Continue reading Tangihua Lions Lodge expands its outdoor programme to combat predators

Remote Blue Duck Station is haven for whio, kiwi and bats

At Blue Duck Station, in the Ruapehu District, you’ll find (no prizes for guessing)… blue ducks! In fact Blue Duck Station has one of the highest concentrations of whio and also kiwi, in New Zealand. “There are about 10 pairs of blue ducks on and around the station,” says owner and manager, Dan Steele. “And … Continue reading Remote Blue Duck Station is haven for whio, kiwi and bats

Kiwi are thriving – and so are kereru

The magnolias aren’t looking too good at Arthur Hinds’ place. His wife Diane used to complain about the damage possums were doing. But that’s not the problem nowadays. The Department of Conservation dealt to the possums in 2000, just before the Whenuakite Kiwi Care Group started their predator control programme. Arthur joined the Kiwi Care … Continue reading Kiwi are thriving – and so are kereru

Trust aims to be predator free from Glenorchy to the Sea

Formed in 2013, the Routeburn Dart Wildlife Trust (RDWT) is inspired by a vision of being predator free “from Glenorchy to the sea,” says trustee Amanda Hasselman. Working in collaboration with the Department of Conservation and the Hollyford Trust, with substantial sponsorship from Air New Zealand, the Trust aims to bring back the birdsong to … Continue reading Trust aims to be predator free from Glenorchy to the Sea

Survey competition winners carry on Grandpa’s conservation work

Lamb prices are poor this season, there have been droughts in recent summers and another drought is forecast, but Otorohanga farming couple Jarrod and Danielle Hawkins were saying just before Christmas that if it did rain this summer then maybe they could buy some more kill traps for their QE II covenant block. They’re strongly … Continue reading Survey competition winners carry on Grandpa’s conservation work