Local Govt | National News Video | Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Search

 


Aerial pest control programme boost whio population

Aerial pest control and ‘nest egg’ programme boost whio population


A study of whio/blue duck in eastern Kahurangi National Park has shown the benefits rearing ducklings in wildlife facilities and aerial 1080 pest control have in increasing their numbers in the wild.

The Department of Conservation study in the Wangapeka-Fyfe Whio Security Site found female whio hatched and reared at a wildlife centre contributed significantly to productivity in the site after being released there as juveniles.

The three-year study also found landscape-scale aerial 1080 pest control provided better protection for whio nests than the site’s intensive trapping along 73km of waterway. Twenty five whio are believed to have fledged in the breeding season immediately after an aerial 1080 pest control operation compared to none and then three in the following two years with trapping alone.

The whio security site, centred on the Wangapeka and Fyfe river catchments, is one of eight nationally ensuring the survival of whio in the wild through DOC’s partnership with Genesis Energy in the Whio Forever Project.

Kate Steffens, Senior Ranger Biodiversity, said the findings helped determine the best measures for increasing the whio population.

“Through the WHIONE – Whio Operation Nest Egg – programme we have been taking eggs from wild pairs in the park to Christchurch’s Peacock Springs Wildlife Centre. The ducklings are hatched and raised there until three to four months old when they are then released into the Wangapeka-Fyfe Whio Security Site.

“Fifty percent of the 28 whio believed to have successfully fledged from nests over the 2011-2014 study period were produced by WHIONE females though they numbered just eight or 38 percent of the 21 females followed.

“The study also showed that in the few months after an aerial 1080 pest control operation by the then Animal Health Board (now TBFree NZ), nine out of 10 nests, 90%, successfully produced ducklings. Flooding caused one nest to fail.

“In the following years with just trapping alone, just three out of 6 nests, 50 percent, and then two out of six nests, 33 percent, successfully produced ducklings.

“Of the nests that failed with trapping alone, one female is thought to have been killed on the nest by an unknown predator and stoats took one clutch of eggs and two eggs from another clutch. Weka predation on nests and flooding also caused nest failures.

Ms Steffens said that a combination of aerial 1080 operations every few years with stoat trapping in the intervening years was needed to protect the whio population. The stoat trapping network will be further intensified next year to provide greater protection for whio in years when aerial 1080 pest control doesn’t take place.

DOC is planning aerial 1080 pest control in the Wangapeka-Fyfe area this spring to protect nesting whio and other vulnerable native species from beech mast predator plagues. Whio survival and productivity will be monitored as part of this operation. This is part of a larger DOC ‘Battle for our Birds’ pest control programme in Kahurangi National Park in response to an exceptionally heavy beech seedfall – mast – that is fuelling rapid rises in rat numbers and subsequently stoat numbers.

Since 2003, 60 WHIONE-reared juveniles have been released into the Wangapeka-Fyfe Whio Security Site. The goal is to establish 50 pairs in the site which currently has around 30 pairs.

Genesis Energy and the Department of Conservation have partnered together in a five year programme to secure the future of this unique threatened native bird. Operating under the name of Whio Forever this partnership is fast tracking implementation of the national Whio Recovery Plan to protect whio and increase public awareness.

The support of Genesis Energy is enabling DOC to double the number of fully secure whio breeding sites throughout the country, boost pest control efforts and enhance productivity and survival for these rare native ducks.

Ends

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Gordon Campbell:
On The Inadequate Response To Sexual Violence Prevention

On combatting sexual violence, the government has finally begun to undo some of the problems that were of its own making. Early in March, ACC launched the Integrated Services for Sensitive Claims scheme – a package aimed at improving the attitudes of ACC staff towards sexual violence victims, and offering them more substantive support.

Hopefully, this will help to reverse the damage done with the insensitive, punitive ACC policy put in place by the incoming Key government in 2009, which in some parts of New Zealand, saw 90 per cent of sexual violence victims being turned away by ACC. More>>

 

PARLIAMENT TODAY:

"To Help Families Get Ahead": April 1 Changes Kick In

Prime Minister John Key says Paid Parental Leave, the parental tax credit, the minimum wage and Superannuation will increase, while average ACC levies will fall, and more people will be helped in to home ownership... More>>

ALSO:

Climate: Ministers Exclude Emissions From ‘Environment Reporting'

The National Party Government has today revealed that the national environmental report topics for this year will, incredibly, exclude New Zealand’s greenhouse gas emissions, the Green Party said today. More>>

ALSO:

No Retrial: Freedom At Last For Teina Pora

The Māori Party is relieved that the Privy Council has cleared the final legal hurdle for Teina Pora who was wrongfully convicted of murder and sent to prison for 22 years. More>>

ALSO:

Germanwings Crash: Privacy Act Supports Aviation Safeguards In New Zealand

Reports that German privacy laws may have contributed to the Germanwings air crash have prompted New Zealand’s Privacy Commissioner to reassure the public that the Privacy Act is no impediment to medical practitioners notifying appropriate authorities to a pilot’s health concerns. More>>

ALSO:

Treaty: Taranaki Iwi Ngāruahine Settles Treaty Claims For $67.5mln

The settlement includes a $13.5 million payment the government made in June 2013, as well as land in the Taranaki region. The settlement also includes four culturally significant sites, the Waipakari Reserve, Te Kohinga Reserve, Te Ngutu o te Manu and Te Poho o Taranaki. More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On A Funeral In Asia, The Northland By-Election, And News Priorities

Supposedly, New Zealand’s destiny lies in Asia, and that was one of Foreign Minister Murray McCully’s rationales for his bungled reforms at MFAT. OK. So, if that’s the case why didn’t Prime Minister John Key attend the state funeral on Sunday of Singapore’s founding leader Lee Kuan Yew? More>>

ALSO:

Werewolf Satire: Not Flag-Waving; Flag-Drowning

The panel choosing the flag options has no visual artists at all. Now, I’ve kerned the odd ligature in my time and I know my recto from my French curve so I thought I’d offer a few suggestions before they get past their depth. More>>

ALSO:

IPCA Reports: Significant Problems In Police Custody

In releasing two reports today, the Independent Police Conduct Authority has highlighted a number of significant problems with the way in which Police deal with people who are detained in Police cells. More>>

ALSO:

Inspector-General of Intelligence and Security: Inquiry Into GCSB Pacific Allegations

The complaints follow recent public allegations about GCSB activities. The complaints, and these public allegations, raise wider questions regarding the collection, retention and sharing of communications data. More>>

ALSO:

TPPA Investment Leak: "NZ Surrender To US" On Corporates Suing Governments

Professor Jane Kelsey: ‘As anticipated, the deal gives foreign investors from the TPPA countries special rights, and the power to sue the government in private offshore tribunals for massive damages if new laws, or even court decisions, significantly affected their bottom line’. More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Regional
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news