Today I met with the very knowledgeable and enthusiastic Tony Oliver (formerly Auckland Southern Regional Parks Manager) and we discussed predator control and biodiversity in general.
Tony lives adjacent to Maggie’s Way – an area that astounded me with it’s potential – and I confess prior to this visit I didn’t even know about it.
The moderately sized ribbons of young trees (mainly, but not all natives) supported a healthy population of Tui, Bellbirds, Fantails, Kingfishers, though strangely missing were Pukeko.
Tony has been successfully trapping rats on his property/bush and as we walked evidence of rats and or mustelids was aplenty – another pointer that only doing control in isolated pockets is an uphill battle, but you gotta start somewhere, right!
As mentioned previously many people are in denial about the predators that are around. This was only a short walk (20 minutes at most) and apart from being somewhat concerned about the appropriateness of some of the plantings the real shock was finding this headless Tui which I would estimate had been dead less than 48 hours.
This is our own back yard, and it’s happening every day, everywhere, and it’s why we need to get underway.
The Tui has probably lost its head while protecting its nest and eggs.
As a brief update I now have materials for building tunnels and over 500 traps waiting for homes. I’m expecting to co-ordinate a day to prepare and assemble tunnel materials – at this stage looking like September 1st, with the public launch to be held at the Soundshell on September 14th from 12pm onwards.
Please distribute this post as far and wide as you can and email me – email@example.com – directly if you can assist with either cutting and assembling tunnels on September 1st or for distribution of traps and tunnels and general promotion of PFUHB on the 14th.