NATIONAL PEST

Central Leader - - NEWS -

Pos­sums were in­tro­duced to New Zealand in the 1830s to start a fur trade. With no nat­u­ral en­e­mies their pop­u­la­tion to­tals 70 mil­lion – about 20 pos­sums for ev­ery per­son. In one night 20 pos­sums will eat 6kg of veg­e­ta­tion. That same num­ber of pos­sums will eat two tonnes of food, in­clud­ing na­tive trees such as po­hutakawa, rata, to­tara, kowhai and ko­hekohe, in a year. More than 400 pos­sums have been caught in Waikowhai Re­serve since the Auck­land Preda­tor Con­trol Pro­gramme be­gan in 2004.

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