THE BENEFITS OF PEST ERADICATION.

Kia ora koutou katoa, Stewart Bull is my name and the natural environment is my game. As part of the Predtor Free Rakiura Governance Group I am representing the Rakiura Titi Island Community which has a membership of approximately 16,000 people.

I am currently a representative on various bodies and committees, Chair of Rakiura Titi Committee, Te Runanga O Ngai Tahu representative on the Rakiura Titi Island Administering Body and a Member of Southland Conservation Board, member of Whenua Hou Committee, Kaitiaki Roopu (Iwi liaison) with Department of Conservation, Te Ao Marama (Murihiku Resource Management Group), Chairman of Oraka Aparima Runaka, member of Coal Island Trust, member of Fiordland Marine Guardians

I have made myself available as it allows me influence for the betterment of the environment and the activities that take place in and around the natural world.

The Rakiura Titi Island community in conjunction with the Department of Conservation undertook a pest eradiation exercise on Taukihepa (Big South Cape) approximately 6 years ago.

We used helicopters to distribute Brodificom all over the island as well as manual distribution in caves and under houses, etc.

It is with pleasure that I can state this was a successful exercise.

Although some of the birds such as weka took a bit of a hit, they have recovered to such a state as to become a nuisance. The recovery of the tui, bellbird, robin, parakeet, morepork etc., has steadily increased as each year passes.

The insects and plant life have also made a noticeable recovery.  The weta had all but disappeared but now on a still night it sounds like rain on the leaf litter as the weta ping about.

I just wanted to share these thoughts as it is a prime example of the positive outcome that can be achieved by removing pest species.

If we apply cost and benefit analysis then benefit definitely wins, therefore imagine the outcomes that we will see as a consequence of ridding Rakiura (Stewart Island) of pest species that are predating our bird life. I have no doubt it will be similar to that we are seeing on the Titi Islands.