MIRO Rat Bait Take-Up
Mainland Island Restoration Operation (MIRO) is a volunteer-based conservation group. It was established to manage, on behalf of the Greater Wellington Regional Council (GWRC), the unfenced “mainland island” in the East Harbour Regional Park (EHRP).
MIRO’s primary activity is predator control in the mainland island to facilitate the regrowth of native flora, and thus support the return of fauna. MIRO also managed the translocation of North Island Robins to the area in and around the mainland island.
Beech masts are an ongoing issue for the area as there are tracts of beech and other native trees. The extensive set of trap lines has worked well and regrowth is now obvious.
Until recently MIRO depended on manual bait counts and hasn’t been able to provide its volunteer trappers with a visual indication where bait take-up is the greatest. That problem was addressed with the setting up of a project with GiC, where ArcGIS is used to map the hot spots. This project has progressed to the point where critical areas on each trap line can now be identified
This GiC-sponsored project is a work in progress, but is already demonstrating how GIS can support important conservation efforts by identifying problem areas for the benefit of conservation groups, in this case MIRO’s trappers.