January 25, 2019
Russell drop shows 1080 effectiveness
A conservationist says New Zealand’s forests are in a crisis and 1080 is the most effective solution.
Dean Baigent Mercer from Forest and Bird helped with the consultation for last September’s 1080 drop on the Russell Forest which resulted in a massive reduction in rat and possum populations.
He says that will give the birds and trees a chance to recover, after years of decline.
While opponents of 1080 drops often advocate for ground trapping programmes, he says that’s nowhere near as effective as helicopter drops.
"Most of the ngahere is above our eye line. The ngahere is two, three, four storeys above us and that’s where the possums and the rats live that are constantly attacking the ngahere and if you can get baits up there as well as at the ground level you manage to knock them down as successfully as possible in the shortest amount of time," Mr Baigent Mercer says.
1080 loses its toxicity in contact with water, so there is very little trace left in the landscape.
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