Lake Sylvan Traps
We continue to manage this line of 34 traps. Last month 33 of them were found with rats in them. This is the biggest haul since we took over the management of the traps.
Otago Community Trust
We have received some great news. Our application to the Otago Community Trust for funding to support our feral cat project was successful. We are awarded us $6000.00. We will use the money in the next 12 months.
DOC Community Fund 2018
Last year the Department of Conservation awarded us $50,000.00 to support our trapping project on the Dart and Rees rivers. As we spent the money we submitted interim and final reports to DOC. We are delighted to say that we came in on budget and that DOC have signed off on the whole project.
Dart and Rees Bird Count
We did our first bird count on the Dart and Rees rivers in November 2017. A planned repeat count in November 2018 was abandoned due to very high water flows on the rivers. We will do a count this year in early November. It will take place over 2 days, exact dates to be finalised nearer the time and will depend on the weather and water flows. If you want to be a volunteer and want some more information please contact us.
Feral cats are a nuisance nationally and not just locally. They are as much a pest as any other non-native predator. We are working closely with the Lakes branch of Forest and Bird to tackle the problem. Feral cat trapping is done in a different way to traditional predator trapping. Our plans are in development and we hope to start this in late spring of this year. We will post updates here in due course.
Buckler Burn and Hedgehogs
The Buckler Burn is a stream that flows into Lake Wakatipu to the south east of Glenorchy. At the end of 2018 we set up a new trap line of 40 traps on each side of the burn. We have done this to stop hedgehogs from moving north along the east side of the lake. We do not have hedgehogs in Glenorchy at present and we want to keep it that way. The traps are serviced monthly by a wonderful team of volunteers from Glenorchy.
Funding from Air NZ has permitted a huge extension of the trap network down all the tributary creeks and into the alpine areas of the track. Evan is delighted at the increased numbers of birds he is now seeing on the track and this was acknowledged by Lou Sanson in his recent Director General Report having walked the track again this summer.
In the November survey we counted 71 wrybills on the Dart River.
We now have the report from the bird count/survey. We will repeat it in 2018 and 2019.
Bird Count 2017
With the help of contractors Mike and Pat from WMIL (Wildlife Management International Limited) the RDWT held its first braided river bird survey over the weekend. We had great weather and willing volunteers and met our goal of walking approximately 20 km stretches of both the Rees and the Dart rivers, finishing at the delta.
DOC Warden Supports Trust
Eiji Kitai, a Greenstone Track hut warden from Queenstown, is spending four months this summer walking the Te Araroa Trail enjoying the environment, meeting new people and spreading the word about the projects of the Routeburn Dart Wildlife Trust.
Real Journeys Fund
We are delighted to announce that Real Journeys has chosen the Trust to be one of two recipients of money from their annual winter ball, which will be in August at Walter's Peak. This is excellent and exciting news. Thank you Real Journeys.
The cost to bait all the river traps
The cost to maintain accurate predator data
The cost to complete an annual bird count on the rivers
The cost to check and reload all the river traps
The cost to check and reload one river trap for a year
The cost to check and reload ten river traps for a year