The community around Ark in the Park creates a buffer zone – a barrier for pests and a haven for wildlife.
As an open sanctuary, we don’t have a predator proof fence. What we do have is over 200 awesome neighbours trapping and baiting at home. Their efforts help to protect the Ark, as well as the native birds, bats, lizards, and invertebrates that overflow from the sanctuary into their backyards.
Together, we can create an environment where our native species thrive.
Do you live nearby? We need your help!
The biggest threat to our native species are the mammalian predators that people introduced to Aotearoa New Zealand – rats, possums, mustelids, and cats. You can help keep pest numbers low through baiting and/or trapping, and with pest monitoring to see how well our control methods are working. We also love to hear from you when you see our native wildlife.
Tell us when you see native wildlife
We use pre-bagged PESTOFF Brodifacoum Possum Bait – simply place the bag into a Philproof station with the knot underneath, using the floor of the station to wedge the bag in place.
Keep poison away from children and non-target animals. Remember to wear gloves, and to wash your hands and clothes after handling bait.
ALWAYS SEEK MEDICAL ADVICE IF POISONING IS SUSPECTED.
Image: Philproof bait station. Sarah Mansell.
For help with baiting, including requests for free bait stations and PESTOFF bait, please contact the Buffer Zone Coordinator at email@example.com.
We recommend using traps that have met animal welfare criteria for their target species. You can see which traps we use for which animals below, as well as how to set up and maintain these. Please note that the rat and stoat traps are best used in a tunnel, ensuring the animal approaches the trap correctly.
Contact firstname.lastname@example.org for free help with your trapping, including requests for traps (which can be loaned or bought).
Image: rat predating a fantail/pīwakawaka nest. Ngā Manu Images.
Modified Victor traps are a humane and cost-effective option for rats. Goodnature A24 traps are another humane option, but Ark in the Park is unable to supply these due to their cost.
Stoats, ferrets and weasels
Image: stoat. Ngā Manu Images.
DOC200 traps are the recommended option for stoats. These will also catch rats and hedgehogs, though they are more expensive than the Modified Victors. Ferrets are larger and should be targeted with DOC250 traps instead.
Here’s a video on how to set up and service a DOC200 trap. Check out Ark volunteer Ken Harrop testing the weight of a DOC200. See this written DOC200 guide, courtesy of the Department of Conservation.
Image: possum eating a kererū egg. Ngā Manu Images.
Flipping Timmys are the recommended solution for possums. These are a modified version of the Timms Trap.
Check out this video from Connovation about how to use a Flipping Timmy.
Minimise harm done by pets
If you live near the Ark please keep our wildlife and your pets safer by reducing the chances for your pet to roam. Even keeping your cat indoors at night can make a significant difference.
Check out this guide to keeping cats happy and healthy at home.
As well as controlling rats, stoats, and possums, we use traps within the Ark to ensure unowned cats aren’t contributing to the loss of our native species. Read more about this here.
Image: domestic cat. Inge Wallumrod.
We recommend that tunnels be placed under bush cover and away from human activity if possible, at least 50 metres apart. When ready, the cards can be unfolded and placed in the tunnels. A small amount of peanut butter should be dabbed around the tunnel.
Check out the Gotcha Traps guides to using the tunnels and how to identify footprints on their website.
Image: a Black Trakka tunnel. Gotcha Traps.
Frequently asked questions
How do I get involved in the Buffer Zone?
If you’re living within the Buffer Zone area and want to get involved, please get in touch with our Buffer Zone coordinator using the contact form below.
Am I within the Buffer Zone area?
What if I am outside the Buffer Zone but want to get involved?
Auckland Council also runs Pest Free Auckland 2050, which has many opportunities for support and help with controlling predators on your property.