Pest-trapping group granted funding

Chain Hills Community Trapping Project founder Rebecca Guest and committee member Jonathan Usher....
Chain Hills Community Trapping Project founder Rebecca Guest and committee member Jonathan Usher. PHOTO: SHAWN MCAVINUE

A pest-trapping project committee seeking to reintroduce the South Island robin to the Chain Hills area has been given a funding boost.

Chain Hills Community Trapping Project founder Rebecca Guest and committee member Jonathan Usher spoke in support of the funding application at the Saddle Hill Community Board meeting in Fairfield last week.

Mrs Guest said the project committee was applying for $2000 to help pay project costs, such as the purchase of possum traps, tracking tunnels and paying hall hire fees for community meetings.

"A big part of our project is to see the reintroduction of the South Island robin to the Chain Hills area.''

The project had four key objectives.

1. To take a co-ordinated and strategic approach to reducing the abundance of pests threatening the South Island robin in Chain Hills, such as possums, mustelids, feral cats and rats.

2. To monitor the possum and rat population in the wider Chain Hills area to assess the effectiveness of the control effort and demonstrate the population is low enough to reintroduce the South Island robin.

3. To establish a programme of community engagement and education to instil a sense of ownership in the project.

4. To find a way to control rabbits in the area.

Later in the meeting, board member Keith McFadyen moved the board give the $2000 requested, board chairwoman Leanne Stenhouse seconded the motion and everyone voted in favour.

Island Park Golf Club was granted $620 to pay for a purpose-built cabinet outside its clubrooms to house its defibrillator. This would allow the community easier access to the life-saving device.

SHAWN.MCAVINUE @thestar.co.nz

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