Oral Presentation- Symposium 12th International Mammalogical Congress

Biodiversity outcomes for New Zealand’s major pest management regimes   (#47)

Rachelle Binny 1 , Andrea Byrom 1 , John Innes 1 , Roger Pech 1 , Alex James 2
  1. Landcare Research, Lincoln, Canterbury, New Zealand
  2. University of Canterbury, Christchurch, New Zealand

New Zealand’s native flora and fauna have immense biological, cultural and economic value, but are under major threat from invasive vertebrate pests. Predation by possums, rodents and mustelids, in particular, has caused many of New Zealand’s iconic native species to decline at an alarming rate. Approximately one third of New Zealand’s land mass is now under some form of vertebrate pest control, either through aerial delivery of toxic baits, or ground-based baiting and trapping operations. Quantifying the benefits of pest management activities for native biota is important for justifying the intensive efforts and resources invested by conservation agencies and other groups concerned with protecting and restoring ecosystems. To this end, we perform extensive meta analyses of published studies reporting native biota responses to pest control, along with data from unpublished outcome monitoring studies conducted across New Zealand. Our meta-analyses provide significant insights into the extent to which ecosystems respond to pest control, and allow a comparison of effect sizes across New Zealand’s different major control regimes.