Protection

Tree Care

In gardening terms, tree care means weeding, staking and mulching, pruning - particularly those trees planted in the last 2 years.

The Tree Care programme for Maara Roa means visiting every tree planted in the last 2 years.

Possum Control

A group of about ten people keeps down the numbers of possums in Maara Roa by helping with the possum control programme.  This involves checking a set of bait stations once every four to six weeks and keeping them filled with possum control pellets.

The bait stations are systematically set out over the reserve in a series of nine lines and our helpers generally have responsibility for one or two of these.  Some of the bait station lines go over quite rugged land, so helpers need to be reasonably fit and active.  They go out in pairs and it usually takes about two hours to complete the job.

The Wellington Regional Council supplies the bait, Brodifacoum, provides maps and maintains the physical access to the bait stations.

The possum control programme has now been going since 2002 and indications are that numbers have dropped significantly since that time.  From now on, the aim is to control re-infestation from possums moving in from outside the reserve.  With low possum numbers, the trees grow faster and produce more fruit and so the bush regenerates more quickly on its own accord.

The attraction of the possum control programme for the helpers, apart from helping the bush return to health, is that they see parts of Maara Roa that most others do not and they get some good exercise in the process! 

If you are interested in joining this group, complete the form on our "How to be Involved" page.

See Why fight the possums? for more details.

Other Pest Species Control

Hares and rabbits are also a pest and tree seedlings need the protection of "hare nets".

Pest Plant Control

See some photos of gorse clearing to see what we are up against.