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Source: Department of Conservation

Date:  18 June 2021

The rāhui does not affect Fullers ferry services to Rangitoto, but access to Motutapu continues to be restricted and bookings for the Motutapu campsite are unavailable while the rāhui is in place.

The Department of Conservation (DOC) Operations Manager Kat Lane says DOC is encouraging the public to respect the rāhui placed by iwi to aid in the capture of the stoat.

“DOC and iwi remain committed to catching the stoat and are focusing our efforts to find this predator.

“We understand this may be inconvenient for visitors to this magnificent island, but we must remain vigilant to ensure our protected and endangered wildlife on the island are safe.”

Stoat presence was first detected on both Motutapu and Rangitoto islands in May 2020. Since then, two stoats were trapped in September 2020 and another in February 2021.

Nearly 600 traps are currently in place across Motutapu and Rangitoto. A further 20 traps scented with female stoat lure will be deployed next week in locations where fresh stoat sign has been found by a mustelid detection dog.

Three thermal imaging cameras and 12 trail cameras are currently on the island, with another thermal imaging camera and 50-plus trail cameras ready to be deployed.

Background Information

Stoats remain elusive on Motutapu: Media release 17 May 2021

The Hauraki Gulf has 47 pest-free islands which are home to threatened native species including Kōkako, Takahē, Coromandel Brown Kiwi, Tīeke/Saddleback, Pōpokotea/Whitehead, Tūturuatu/Shore Plover and Pāteke/Brown teal.

Visiting pest-free islands

When visiting pest-free islands or islands that are becoming pest-free, make sure you check your gear before you leave the mainland.

  • Check – your gear for pests such as rodents and insects
  • Clean – footwear and gear, removing soil and seeds
  • Seal – ensure your gear is zipped up (no open bags)

When you arrive on a pest-free island, you may be met by rangers to recheck your gear. Dogs are not allowed on island reserves in the Bay of Islands, Hauraki Gulf, and Marlborough Sounds. Check specific rules for a place before you visit.

A rāhui (physical and spiritual protection mechanism) sets a temporary prohibition around the rāhui area and limits access for that period.

Contact

For media enquiries contact:

Email: media@doc.govt.nz

MIL OSI