The Otama Reserves Group implemented a local predator control programme on the Otama Reserves and private landholdings. This initiative began in 2018 with the establishment of a trapline encompassing the 5 reserves and landowner property and has resulted in the trapping of 348 predators to date. These have been mainly hedgehogs, possums, pigs, rats , stoats and feral cats. The kills are humane and total 175 in 2018, 152 in 2019 and 21 so far in 2020. Myna and Magpie traps are also now being utilised as they prey on native species.
These successful trapping statistics are beneficial to the survival of native bird life and we are now experiencing an increase in the 25 native bird species living in the reserves.
These species include the critically endangered Matuku – hurepo (Bittern) Matata (Fernbird), Moho-pereru (Banded Rail), Pateke (Brown Teal), Karuhiruhi (Pied Shag), Kawaupaka (Little Shag), Kawau-tua-whenua (Black Shag), Kotare (Kingfisher), Tuturiwhatu pukunui (Dotteral) and Torea-pango (Oyster Catcher).
Our efforts have resulted in the successful fledging of 2 Tuturiwhatu pukunui (Dotteral) chicks this year and our first Torea-pango (Oyster Catcher) chick in 5 years.
A big thanks to Paul Kington, Vince Mathews and Micali Evans who helped set up the traplines and check the trap lines regularly. Thanks to DOC and WRC for funding for the traps and bait.