30th November 2022

New Trapline at Bush creek, Arrowtown

Written by Bonnie Wilkins – Whakatipu Hub Coordinator for SLS and WWT

It has been a bad few months to be a possum in Bush Creek, Arrowtown! The Southern Lakes Sanctuary have been carrying out a possum blitz. This location was chosen as it has the highest potential biodiversity gains in the area and plenty of possum signs around.

We started out by doing some possum monitoring, using wax tags, followed by deploying 24 AT220 traps. These traps are a self-resetting possum trap that can also kill rodents and mustelids. One trap has enough battery life for 100 kills or lasts around 6 months and then can be easily recharged.

Field crew have been checking these traps fortnightly to get a good idea of possum numbers over time and getting great results, the last check bought us up to 410 possums. As well as 410 possums, the traps have also killed 71 ‘other’ pests, likely to be rodents.

Last week marked 3-months for this project, so we did a second round of wax tags, which we will have results for early December, these stay out for a 7-night measure. As well as the wax tags we also put out 4 cameras to get a bigger picture of how many possums are left lurking. Watch this space for results! 

Bush Creek Traps
Total kills at Bush Creek
AT220 Possum Kills Bush Creek
Catches beside two of the NZ AutoTraps AT220’s
AT220 Possum Kills Bush Creek

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