Thursday 26th 2017 - Ben Teele -

Wilding News - We had a very successful Spring Chop on Sunday, the 15th of October.

Around 100 people showed up for the Wilding Spring Chop event, and lots of wilding trees got cut down.

We had a BBQ thanks to the Green Team from Air New Zealand, which helped out on the day, and with pastries provided by Luxury Real Estate. Arrowfield Apartments provided the BBQ itself.

So a big thank you to them from the Arrowtown Choppers.

Thursday evening chops are now back on for anyone who is keen to help. Meeting at the Chinese Village from 5:30 pm to walk up the hill. More details can be found on the Arrowtown Choppers Facebook page.

Tied in with the Choppers, the methodology is being finalised for dealing with the wilding problem around Arrowtown. This includes estimated costs for removal and revegatation. Once this is confirmed, the plan is to have another community meeting to discuss the approach being taken, and outline some idea of timing. I am also hopeful that the project could tie in nicely with the Environmental Gateway idea pending the results of the feasibility study.

Predator Free Arrowtown continues apace

thanks to more businesses sponsoring traps, the support of the Akarua Autumn Festival with 25 DOC150s, and 15 coming from QEII, as the area is part of the Mahu Whenua covenant.

There are 75 traps out in the Bush Creek catchment at the moment, with another 64 to go out. There are traps now all the way from the pipeline at the start of the track to the saddle, and up into the remnant beech forest.

The Brow Peak trap line has now been started, and will help create a buffer zone against stoat intrusion, as well as protecting our native pipit (at risk, declining) and falcon (at risk, recovering) up in the sub-alpine zone. The highest trap is now at 1,000 metres above sea level.

After catching a number of stoats in the winter, the spring weather has seen the emergence of rats, which are now being caught in the traps baited with fresh rabbit. Scavenging rates are still high under the GoodNature resetting traps, indicating some form of predator is still out there. Both the local Arrowtown Cubs and the Scouts have checked out the traps, and seen how they work. 

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