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Auckland Council

How we control pests

Ā mātou tikanga patu kīrehe orotā

Why pest animal control is important

Control of pest animals helps us protect:

  • native species from predators
  • habitat and food sources for native species
  • water quality, natural assets and ecosystems.

For more information on pest animals see the Regional Pest Management Strategy.


Current pest control methods

We select pest control methods depending on the species and site. These may include:

  • traps
  • shooting
  • toxins.

We try to prevent the spread of pest animals through pathway management. We do this by ensuring pest animals are not transferred between sites via equipment.

Pest control projects

We operate a number of pest animal control programmes around specific locations.

We also hold workshops for community groups to help them implement their local projects.

Hunua Project: 1080 pest management

Possums and rats pose a risk to our forests and threatened species like the native kōkako.

In 2015, we aerially applied 1080 (sodium fluoroacetate) to approximately 21,500 hectares of parkland and private land in the Hunua Ranges area.

A few months after the last application, monitoring results showed the lowest recorded figures for rats and possums. There was zero per cent found in the kōkako management areas.

A similar Hunua aerial application took place in August-September 2018.

For more information, see Hunua Project: 1080 pest management or Hunua kōkako recovery project.

Projects in the Hauraki Gulf islands

Pest animal control is an important part of how we protect the Hauraki Gulf islands.

In 1998, the Hauraki Gulf islands became a 'Controlled Area' under the Biosecurity Act 1993. It is now an offence to take animal pests into the Hauraki Gulf.

For a full list of pest animals, see section 17 of the Auckland Regional Pest Management Strategy.

For visitor guidelines, see Visiting the Hauraki Gulf Islands.

Moving a building between islands

If you're moving a building into, through or from one island in the Hauraki Gulf to another, you need to have an inspection to ensure that no animal pests are being transported.

To book an inspection, contact us.

The Pest Free Hauraki Gulf campaign

Pest Free Hauraki Gulf is a joint campaign with the Department of Conservation to ensure the islands remain pest-free.

You can find information about the campaign on the Pest Free Hauraki Gulf website.

Possum control

We carry out possum control in areas of high conservation value across Auckland.

Sometimes funding for possum control comes from targeted rates for properties in the most affected areas.

We also look at trend monitoring to indicate where future control measures may be needed.

Goat control in the Hunua Ranges

We control feral goats in the Hunua Ranges Regional Park and in nearby areas on private land.

We have already eradicated feral goats from other regional parks, and Hauraki Gulf islands.

We need to keep goat numbers under control to allow developing native plants to mature.

Pig control in the Waitākere Ranges

We have stepped up our pig control programme in the Waitākere Ranges after pigs were found to be likely carriers of kauri dieback disease.

This work is carried out by experienced contractors, who follow strict hygiene procedures to ensure they do not spread the disease themselves.

We monitor pig populations in association with Landcare Research.

Feral deer control

We work closely with the Department of Conservation (DOC) to manage feral deer and protect our regional parks and DOC’s conservation estate.

We control feral deer on public land and on private land around regional parks, using professional hunters.

To report any wandering deer, email the Biosecurity team at or call 09 301 0101.

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