Further to advice in November, we want to update you following recent information from the camera monitoring of disarmed A24s at Willowbank and at an ONE creche site. The camera monitoring has shown that rowi larger than 650g are still able to access the inside of these traps when set at 12cm above ground and in vertical orientation.
We do not yet know how often this might occur, however this identifies that any kiwi can potentially access these traps in a way that could at least cause bill injuries. It should be noted that bill injuries have not been detected at other sites where kiwi are being monitored in the presence of A24s.
With currently available information the only way we can be confident that kiwi are unable to interact with these traps is to set them at least 1 metre above ground.
We acknowledge that raising traps above 1 metre may affect their efficacy, particularly as a stoat control tool, and potentially alter the non-target risk profile for other bird species. We appreciate that this lack of clarity is not ideal, but would rather that you have the recent information so that you can weigh up the advantages and disadvantages for your area.
Work is ongoing to identify how this risk to kiwi can be best managed (identifying whether devices designed to exclude other non-target species will successfully exclude kiwi).
There will be ongoing communication through these channels as we learn more about how significant this risk to kiwi is, and how best it should be managed.