Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | Video | Questions Of the Day | Search


MPI sniffer dog joins stink bug fight

MPI sniffer dog joins stink bug fight

A bug-sniffing detector dog introduced by the Ministry for Primary Industries will help stop the potentially devastating brown marmorated stink bug from making a home in New Zealand.

An MPI labrador (named Georgie) demonstrated her sniffing skills on stage today by locating dead stink bugs hidden in a harvesting machine at the New Zealand Winegrowers conference in Blenheim.

MPI will have two trained dogs ready to sniff out stink bugs this summer, including a specialist dog to assist with detecting the pest in the event of an incursion, says MPI Border Clearance Director Steve Gilbert.

"While we do our best to prevent this unwanted pest coming into New Zealand in the first place, we need to be prepared if something slips through our border defences.

"Studies by the United States Department of Agriculture and our own trials show that dogs have huge potential to help detect stink bugs when they cluster in groups."

Mr Gilbert says the stink bug dogs will also assist with biosecurity detection work at the border, including locating bugs on imported vehicles and machinery.

"Georgie, who is an experienced detector dog, picked up the new scent very quickly. This suggests it should be relatively easy to train other MPI dogs at short notice for stink bug detection work."

The stink bug season will start on 1 September. Mr Gilbert says MPI will again be stepping up its efforts over the spring and summer months to stop brown marmorated stink bug from reaching New Zealand.

"This will include carrying out increased inspections of vessels and goods from the United States and countries in Europe where the bug is established."

Brown marmorated stink bug would have a serious impact on New Zealand’s horticultural industries if it became established, he says.

"Preventing a stink bug invasion is one of MPI’s highest biosecurity priorities."


© Scoop Media

Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Getting To Zero: Challenging But Achievable

Today we released our draft report on how New Zealand should transition to a low-emissions economy. New Zealand has had climate change policies in place for some time but these have not been effective in reducing domestic emissions. For businesses, households, investors and consumers to manage the risks and seize the opportunities of moving to a low-emissions future, change is needed.

“Our report shows that major changes will be needed”, says our Chair, Murray Sherwin, “Emerging technologies are likely to play a large role in facilitating those changes and creating new opportunities for New Zealand. Our inquiry shows that, if credible and stable climate policy can be established now, businesses, households and consumers will be better able to plan for change and manage the risks of moving to a low-emissions economy.” More>>


Gordon Campbell: On The Perils Of Using PPPs To Meet Auckland’s Roading Needs

Earlier today, Transport Minister Phil Twyford announced that one of two new roads that the government would be co-financing would be a PPP – namely, the Penlink project that will link the northern motorway to the Whangaparaoa Peninsula. More>>


PM's Europe Trip: CHOGM & Bilateral Meetings

Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern is in Europe for the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (CHOGM) in London and meetings with counterparts in Paris and Berlin. More>>


Gordon Campbell: On Thompson + Clark & Russia’s World Cup

Daily, the coalition government keeps running into examples of the toxic legacy left behind by National – and just as regularly, even the simple fixes are proving stubbornly difficult to enact. Take the case of the security firm Thompson + Clark ... More>>


HiveMind: Fair Enough? How Should New Zealanders Be Taxed?

Have Your Say - Scoop and PEP invite you to share your issues, ideas and perspectives on the NZ tax system with other New Zealanders using Scoop’s HiveMind tool. This Tax HiveMind is intended to complement and feed into the review being run by the Government-appointed Tax Working Group (TWG), which is looking at the fairness, balance and structure of the tax system with a 10-year time horizon. More>>


Addressing Climate Change: No New Offshore Exploration Permits

The Coalition Government is taking an important step to address climate change and create a clean, green and sustainable future for New Zealand, Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern announced today. More>>





Featured InfoPages