Visiting Pest Free Islands
If you’re planning a walk on Rangitoto Island or visit Tiritiri Matangi Island or Rotoroa Island you need to be aware that they are all pest free.
Here is a check list of the things to note before you visit a pest free island.
CHECK your gear for pests:
- Check all your gear is free of rats, mice, ants, skinks, soil and seeds, especially any camping gear. These are great places for pests to hide.
- Take extra care to ensure your gear is pest-free if you have Argentine ants or rainbow skinks where you live.
CLEAN your gear and footwear:
- Make sure to clean your clothing, footwear and camping gear, remove any soil and seeds before and after each walk
- Look out for cleaning stations, and use the brushes to scrub your shoes.
SEAL your gear properly:
- Pack food in sealed containers to avoid attracting rodents.
- Your bags must be zipped closed (no open bags). Mice, ants and rainbow skinks can crawl in through the smallest hole. Be vigilant.
IMPORTANT: Rubbish on the Island
You must take all rubbish with you when you leave Rangitoto Island, Tiritiri Matangi Island and Rotoroa Island.
Why is this so important?
Pests have successfully been eradicated from the Hauraki Gulf’s conservation islands making them sanctuaries for native birds and wildlife. But unfortunately, pests can (and do!) make it to the islands by stowing away on shoes or in gear if we’re not careful.
- Pests such as, rats, mice, Argentine ants, and plague skinks injure and kill our native wildlife and compete for their food.
- Invasive weeds can alter the habitat that wildlife needs to survive.
- Soil may contain plant diseases like kauri dieback which is killing our kauri forests.
- Rats can squeeze through a 12 mm gap, and mice can squeeze through a 7 mm gap.
- Insects could hide in your bag, and weeds seeds and soil could cling to your clothing, prams, gear and shoes.
- Pests threaten New Zealand wildlife. That is why there are strict bio-security measures in place for all visitors.
Found a pest?
- On the mainland: Get rid of the pest and clean your gear again
- On the ferry: Tell the crew what you have found and where it is
- On the island: Report sightings to the DOC conservation emergency hotline 0800 DOC HOT (0800 362 468)
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