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Te Puna aiming to be pest free

Residents in Te Puna are set to launch an attack on rodents next month.

Te Puna is launching a rodent attack next month to start the ambitious goal of a pest-free Te Puna.

Free rodent traps, free instruction, heaps of information and refreshments will be on offer at Waitui Reserve on Saturday March 2, from 3pm – 4.30pm.

The pest-free initiative is an action in the Te Puna Community Development Plan and is supported by Western Bay of Plenty District Council, Predator-Free Bay of Plenty and the Bay of Plenty Regional Council.

Te Puna locals Judith Callow and Jo Gravit put together initial plans with the help of Karen Summerhays.

Pest Free Te Puna spokesperson Kim Edwards says the initial focus will be on the Snodgrass Road area but anyone who wants to start pest-free action on their road or neighbourhood is welcome to come along to the day at Wainui Reserve.

One trap per household will be supplied by Predator-Free Bay of Plenty to anyone who registers and undertakes to check their traps and report findings.

“It’s always good to catch a rat and it’s pretty good to find untaken baits after a while – meaning that the rats around your place are either dead or discouraged,” says Kim.

The group’s shag logo represents the reasons behind the pest-free movement to lend a hand to the bird life in the Te Puna bush and river areas which is under attack by pests.

Pest-free work already underway in Te Puna Quarry Park is proof of success. Bird life such as kereru which used to be incredibly rare in the Park, is now quite common and birdsong is heard everywhere.

Te Puna School also has a rodent trapping programme where student teams vie with each other to see how many catches they get in traps around the school.

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