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Ā mātou tikanga patu kīrehe orotā

How we control pests

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 Plan (RPMP).

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 How we protect the Hunua Ranges from pests and the 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 pests into the Hauraki Gulf.

For a full list of pests, see section 5 of the Auckland Regional Pest Management Plan.

For visitor guidelines, see Visiting the Hauraki Gulf islands.

The Pest Free Hauraki Gulf campaign and Pest Free Warrants

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 and Pest Free Warrants at Visiting the Hauraki Gulf islands.

Possum control

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

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

Feral goat control

We control feral goats in the Hunua Ranges Regional Park, Waitākere Ranges Regional Park and other high value ecosystems across Tāmaki Makaurau Auckland.

If you farm goats in the Hunua or Waitākere Ranges feral goat exclusion zones, make sure your goats are clearly identified and contained behind adequate fences (PDF, 444 KB).

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.

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, contact us at or call 09 301 0101.

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