A brazen possum
The antics of a brazen pest possum has been caught on camera by volunteers of the Pauanui-tairua Cycle Trail.
There are 35 bait stations and 35 traps installed along the length of the trail, which is being constructed by volunteers of the Hikuai District Trust with donations from the public and help from the community.
The Trust was given donations to install a camera to help monitor its pest control. Volunteers Peter and Linda Millen watched the action on screen when a possum was captured at night, feasting on the bait. The couple has put in hundreds of hours into keeping rat and possum numbers down to protect endangered birds and enhance native bush along the trail. They recently discovered a possum had been living in the tree where the camera was mounted.
Records kept since January 2017 to 23 August 2018 showed approximately 219 pest animals have been caught by Good Nature traps, which kill instantly using a gas cylinder that self-reloads, and wooden ‘DOC 200’ traps and bait stations positioned along the trail. Peter and Linda monitor the DOC 200 traps regularly and change out bait — which consists of fresh eggs supplied by the local Pauanui supermarket.