Bream Head Reserve from Manaia

Rangers Report – January 2015

Steve Henderson NRC

Steve Henderson (NRC biosecurity officer) examining vials laid for Argentine Ant monitoring at Ocean Beach.

As promised the ranger team have been out in the reserve throughout December and January with a small break around New Year. We have been busy with our usual bait and trapping rounds, Argentine Ant monitoring and contriol, Lizard monitoring, install of new bait stations in the Eastern part of Area 4 and the survey of a new line from Dead Horse Bay (the bay immediately to the SE of Ocean Beach) to the “Old Woman”. We have also been preparing the site for our new ranger headquaters as our new shipping containers have arrived in Auckalnd and will soon be transported to Ocean Beach to be installed.

Stoat Invasion!

It was a real mixed summer for predator control results which all gave positive outcomes for our intensive programme. Our overall Rodent Tracking Index for the entire reserve under intensive control (approx 650ha) was just 1.3%. Previous RTI results have returned a RTI of around 7-8%.
The other side of the coin is however that we had two infestations of Stoats that really kept us on our toes. Our team went into overdrive and serviced our network of mustelid traps three times in one and a half weeks (we usually service the traps once per fortnight). I am very happy to say that within that one and a half weeks the Stoats caught had reduced to zero, a great result for the extra hard work. The last two mustelid service rounds (a one month period) since these invasions has only produced one stoat for the entire 85 mustelid traps! As I said earlier I believe this has shown us a real positive about the Trusts’ fantastic role in restoring and maintaining the biodiversity of Bream Head Scenic Reserve. Most importantly it shows how extremely vital it is that we must continue to monitor and control pests at the intensity that we do.

Read the January 2015 Rangers Report (1.9MB pdf) for more details on this and other stories.