Eradicating predators from Kawau Island
Kawau Island is a special place with many natural and cultural values. Most of the islands of the Hauraki Gulf are now pest free and Kawau lies close to several of them as well as Tawharanui open sanctuary, where invasive mammals have been eradicated.
Kawau has an extensive canopy and is a large size with diverse habitats. It has the potential to sustain species that require significant space, and the island already supports kiwi, weka and pāteke. The proximity to other pest‐free islands and sanctuaries would allow for the natural re‐introductions of many bird species. Kākā are steadily re‐establishing on the island and there have been anecdotal sightings of bellbirds and kākāriki in the northern end of the island. The ecological values of the island will be far more robust in the absence of invasive species.
The island is dominated by indigenous vegetation, but forest quality and bird abundance has been eroding due to predation. This eradication project is a crucial trigger to reverse the decline. The project aims to eradicate rats, stoats, possums and wallabies from the island and restore the native biodiversity and ecosystem.
The project is currently in the feasibility phase and a report assessing the technical feasibility and social acceptance of eradicating target species was released in August 2023. You can download and review the full report and a summary of key findings at www.aucklandcouncil.govt.nz/kawau-island
|PF2050Ltd investment||$1.3 million (Jobs for Nature funding)|
|Total project investment||$6.5 million|
|Funding commitment||5 years|
|Project lead||Auckland Council|
|Māori partners||Ngāti Manuhiri|
|Collaborators||The Pohutukawa Trust, the Department of Conservation and other partners.|
|Ambition||The project will work to eradicate possums, rats and mustelids. Auckland Council will also concurrently eradicate wallabies, consistent with the Auckland Regional Pest Management Plan 2020-2030|
|Design||The project is currently in the feasibility assessment stage.|