Rats

DOC admits to substantial 1080 by-kill

Source/ Facebook

Source/ Facebook

Simply put, DOC rationalise continued 1080 use on the basis that it kills more pests than it does non-target species, and the resulting environment then encourages those species to recover ‘faster’.

New Zealand’s biggest pest poisoning programme killed 95 per cent of the rats it went after and more evidence shows forests are better off after 1080 drops, scientists say.

The New Zealand Ecological Society 2015 Conference is being held at the University of Canterbury this week and one focus is on the use and effects of 1080, or sodium fluoroacetate.

The toxin has been widely used for pest control in New Zealand since the 1950s – possums are a target because they spread tuberculosis – but critics say it kills more than just pests.

Last year the Department of Conservation carried out its largest poisoning operation, largely 1080 drops over 680,000 hectares, in response to a one-in-15-year beech mast season which would have fuelled a pest population explosion. Read more »

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Pimping the Poor: Dead mouse under pillow, and it’s not the woman’s fault for living in a pig sty?

TVNZ has joined the media fetish for pimping the poor.

They have run a story about a woman who says finding a dead mouse under a pillow was the last straw for her and her state house.

Dead rats, mice in food and freezing cold homes have prompted angry Housing New Zealand tenants to demand answers.

Hundreds of people want action over what they say are slum-like conditions in state houses in South Auckland and number of local MPs have called a meeting to discuss the issue.

Melissa Nganu’s rodent-infested Otara home is literally making her sick and the working single parent of four won’t let her children inside the state home.

The house is currently unliveable but she continues to pay the government rent.

“I was told not to touch anything in this house, poo’s everywhere, they got into my kids’ food in the cupboard, my kids’ lunch,” Ms Nganu told ONE News.

She is adamant she keeps a clean house but the mice come through the rotting wood in the hot water cupboard and no matter how many traps or bait her dad lays they keep returning.

Housing New Zealand contractors came to lay baits at the house three weeks ago but haven’t been back to clean up the mess.

Read more »

Damned if you do, damned if you don’t

The Hunua Ranges in South Auckland is home to two-thirds of the city’s water supply, but also thousands of unwelcome rats.

The rat population increased ninefold over summer, resulting in tens of thousands of rats – the highest number in the ranges in more than 15 years.

Council biodiversity manager Rachel Kelleher said that justified the decision to drop the poison, probably in late July or early August.

She said the drop would happen then because there was less food for the pests, and also fewer people would be using the ranges recreationally.

Leading up to the drop, population counts would be conducted for some of the most threatened species, including kokako and Hochstetter’s frogs.

A non-toxic bait will be dropped beforehand, so the rats are tricked into thinking the bait is safe. The poisonous bait will be dropped five to ten days later. Read more »

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Too good to be true, Green party are pro rat

To cap off election policies of?creating a fleet of hospital ships to serve the developing world, taxing disposable nappies, cutting the size of National Lottery prizes and banning the Grand National the Green party in the UK is also moving to give human rights to rats.

They already have policies?legalising hard drugs and brothels, placing new restrictions on advertising and air travel, imposing taxes on large presents and pop stars and cutting economic growth to zero in order to protect the planet.

But cuddling up to rats takes them to a new low point.

Under the plans to be debated by members, Article Five of the UN Declaration of Human Rights ? stating ?no one shall be subjected to torture or to cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment? ? would be extended to ?all sentient life forms?.

The Declaration was drawn up in 1948 in response to the horrors of Nazi Germany.

The plans would impose the same prison sentences for the killing, torture or ?kidnapping? of dolphins, whales, apes and elephants as would occur for equivalent crimes committed against humans.

Members also propose a ban on commercial horse and dog racing.

Read more »

Sledge of the Day

Arts, lifestyle, fitness and travel blogger, David Farrar, sledges out the entire National caucus on Larry Williams Drive last night.

farrar

John Banks will pleased that David Farrar has such and affinity for rats…then again when he has worked closely with Murray McCully and Bill English for so long you can understand it.

Paid with rats? How does that turn into a living wage?

Vice is enjoying some of New Zealand quirkiness

For centuries New Zealand flightless birds and slow-moving reptiles lived without fear of native predators. This golden era ended when the British showed up on rat-infested ships. Since then, rats have become the key player in the?destruction of native forestry?and the?extinction of nine native species?of birds. Clearly the rats need to go, but how do you motivate New Zealanders into becoming active rat hunters?

Beer Trap?is a program that lets time-rich and beer-poor university students swap dead rats for free brews. Genius, right? We spoke to Jonathan Musther, one of the masterminds of the campaign, about the intricacies of fixing the environment with young Kiwis and alcohol.

VICE: So first of all, how do I get a free beer?
Jonathan Musther:?It’s pretty simple, you bring a dead rat to Victoria University of Wellington?s Science Society, we supply the traps, and we exchange it for a voucher which you can use to claim a drink at The Hunter Lounge (the uni bar).

Other than beers, why are we killing rats?
It?s a twofold problem. For one they kill a lot of our natives. They eat skinks and lizards and they also eat insects like the Weta. Plus birds? eggs?even tree-nesting birds like the Tui?s because rats can climb trees quite happily.

Interesting to know that the money?we use to fund our?universities are going to provide beer for pied piper type students. Read more »

Confidence. It works.

I'm disgusted

Michael Cullen tipped to announce retirement from politicsMichael Cullen, one of New Zealand’s longest serving MPs is expected on Tuesday to announce his retirement from politics [TVNZ News Politics]

I am disgusted as a National party member that the Government has seen fit to appoint Dr (but can’t write a script) Micjhael Cullen to anything other than the Prison Canteen fund let alone to the board of NZ Post.

I am sure that John Key has his reasons, he is the Prime minister after all, and I can understand the politics of the decision but I still believe that Michael Cullen should be prosecuted for lying in the Prefu.

He is a mendacious, trough snuffler of the highest order.

The only upside of appointing this prick to a board that I can see is to send him a letter requiring his resignation for being a member of the Labour Party like he did to many in 2000.

Of course in parliament there is a real upside. The Tizard Timebomb just moved that much closer for Labour and is set yo go off should Twyford win the nomination and then the seat of Mt Albert for Labour.

The other upside is that Cullen will no longer be sniping from the benches and Labour’s only halfway competent member on rules is the lisping Trevor Mallard.

Now if Parekura Horomia waddles off to a a government job, and all indications suggest this is likely before years end then Tizard is back in parliament. Labour has a dilemma, but that is a seperate post.

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