Wednesday, 22 August 2007

Orokonui Ecosanctuary

The newly completed pest exclusion fence has been tested by the
weather over the last month, with a severe rain deluge and high stream
levels as well as winds gusting up to 120km/h on the eastern side.
Overall it has withstood these events well, although some adjustments
have been made and one area of subsidence has needed more work.

Fifteen of Dunedin's talented young musicians are donating their
talents in support of the Orokonui Ecosanctuary through a fundraising
concert on Sat, Sep 1, 7.30pm at Burns Hall, First Church. Tickets $12
adult and $5 school children. See posters at the shop and library for
further info.

At the recent local meeting our General Manager Chris Baillie spoke
about her Australian experiences and made us realise that while it has
been difficult at Orokonui getting plants established with hungry
rabbits around, our counterparts over the water have to deal with much
worse conditions like salt pans and bush fires that can wipe out all
plantings in one fell swoop.

The first stage of the pest eradication has begun with the removal by
trapping of 800 possums. It is estimated that this may be a third of
the total number in the ecosanctuary. The second stage will be 2
aerial drops of a rat poison (brodifacoum) 6 weeks apart. Signs will
be erected when the poison is laid (the first drop is expected to be
on or after the 24th August). It is not expected that any of the
poison bait will land outside the fence, and the perimeter track will
be carefully checked on the day. However as a precaution people are
warned: DO NOT ALLOW CHILDREN OR DOGS AROUND THE ECOSANCTUARY
PERIMETER AND DO NOT HANDLE OR REMOVE ANY BAIT OR DEAD ANIMALS FROM
THE ECOSANCTUARY PERIMETER until the signs are removed.

For further information on the ecosanctuary see our box at the
Blueskin Bay Library or visit www.orokonui.org.nz . A fact sheet on
the aerial drop is available at the library and the shop.

by Sue Hensley

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From blueskin.co.nz and 'Blueskin News' published by Blueskin Media:
voluntary/non-profit community publishers in Blueskin Bay (Seacliff,
Warrington, Evansdale, Waitati, Doctors Point), Dunedin, New Zealand.
All our material is "copyleft" and may be freely re-edited and
republished. If you want to credit the source it's "blueskin.co.nz".

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