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

 

New rabbit virus to be released in parts of the Waikato

MEDIA RELEASE
27 February 2018

New rabbit virus to be released in parts of the Waikato

Waikato Regional Council will be releasing a virus to reduce the significant environmental and agricultural impacts of wild rabbits in some parts of the region.

It follows a decision by the Ministry for Primary Industries last week to grant approvals to Environment Canterbury, on behalf of a national consortium of agencies, for the importation and release of the new rabbit haemorrhagic virus disease strain, RHDV1 K5.

This is not a new virus. It is a Korean strain of the existing RHDV1 virus already widespread in New Zealand and only affects the European rabbit. RHDV1 K5 was selected for release because it can better overcome the protective effects of the benign calicivirus (RCA-A1), which occurs naturally in wild rabbit populations in New Zealand.

Biosecurity pest animals team leader Brett Bailey said: “This is not a silver bullet, but this new strain of virus is expected to support other control methods and help manage rabbits in areas where there are large populations of this pest.

“Rabbits contribute to erosion and undermine buildings with their burrowing, and they affect dune restoration and native restoration programmes too.

“Now’s the optimum time to act, and we aim to have the release completed by the end of April. We’ve been working closely with local councils, as well as the Department of Conservation, to identify the best areas in our region to carry out the initial release.”

In the Waikato, the virus will be released at sites in Pauanui, Whangamata, Thames, Matarangi, Hamilton, Cambridge, Taupo, Kuratau and Kinloch.

Mr Bailey said the council is aware of the conditions in the approval and will work to ensure they are met and effectively enforced. He said the release of the virus would be carried out by experienced contractors.

“The virus is specific to rabbits. Humans and other animals won’t be affected if they accidentally come into contact with carrots treated with the virus or the carcasses of rabbits killed by the virus,” he said.

A vaccine (Cylap) is available in New Zealand which has been helping to protect rabbits from the current RHDV1 for many years. Studies undertaken by the Australian government indicate that this vaccine will help protect pet and farmed rabbits against the RHDV1 K5 strain.

Pet rabbit owners are advised to talk to their local veterinarian to ensure their rabbits have the best protection available. Zoetis, the manufacturer of the vaccine, has confirmed that additional vaccine supplies have been made available in New Zealand for the release.

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

 

Dealing Crackdown, Addiction Support: Government Action On Synthetics

The NZ Drug Foundation has welcomed the Government’s response to synthetic drug deaths. The response strikes a balance between giving law enforcement the tools they need to target criminal networks and changing drug law to make it easier for people to access help when they need it. More>>

ALSO:

Strategy Committee Unanimous: Wellington To Forge Ahead With Convention Centre

The three-storey Cable Street building, with around 18,000-square metres of floor space, will comfortably be able to host 1500 people for conventions. It includes a 1651sq m exhibition area that will attract international exhibitions too big for nearby Te Papa and provide an always-changing visitor attraction. More>>

ALSO:

Surveying The Surveillance: First IGIS Review Of Warrants Under New Act

The report sets out the Inspector-General’s interpretation of the new warrant provisions under the ISA and her expectations of the GCSB and NZSIS when they prepare warrant applications. More>>

SSC: 2018 Public Service Workforce Data Published

State Services Commissioner Peter Hughes has published the 2018 Our People, Public Service Workforce Data , which shows the Public Service is making significant progress in important areas. More>>

ALSO:

Sinking Cap: Auctions, Permanent Forests, Added To ETS

The move to auctions, signalled in an August consultation paper, will help put a cap on the number of emission units available over time. Annual announcements, looking forward five years, will help provide certainty for scheme participants, she said. More>>

ALSO:

Joint Select Committee Report: Achieving Smokefree 2025

In a historic first for select committees, the Māori Affairs Committee and the Health Committee presented their joint report on achieving the Smokefree 2025 goal to the House on Tuesday, 11 December 2018. More>>

"Shared Interests And Democratic Values": Peters To Visit USA

Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Affairs Minister Winston Peters will travel to Washington D.C. for talks with US Secretary of State Michael R. Pompeo and other senior members of the US Administration. More>>

 
 
 
 
 

LATEST HEADLINES

  • PARLIAMENT
  • POLITICS
  • REGIONAL
 
 

InfoPages News Channels