Our management of plant and animal pests has two distinct aims - habitat protection and biosecurity.
Pest plants and animals seriously threaten our natural environment and agricultural industry. Controlling these pests is an important part of protecting our Region's natural environment and the productive capacity of land.
To protect our Region from pests that pose economic, production and habitat threats (e.g. Old Man's Beard, possums and rabbits) we undertake biosecurity work using powers from the Biosecurity Act. We also have a role in supporting the response to nationally significant biosecurity threats or initiatives, e.g. Foot and Mouth, Didymo and an increasing number of new threats.
In tandem with biosecurity, we also use our powers under the Resource Management Act to control pest plants and animals that threaten the health of high-value wetlands and areas of native forest.
It is with both biosecurity and protection of native habitats in mind that we offer an advisory service to members of the public, and are happy to assist with professional advice or the lending of traps to reduce nuisance pests.
Horizons and district/city councils within the Region have shared statutory responsibility to maintain native habitats. Councils take responsibility for habitats in private ownership, and the flora and fauna in our waterways, while Crown land is looked after by the Department of Conservation (DoC).
The pests we manage and the methods of control we use are set out in our Regional Pest Management Strategies. We also have a commitment to enforce the control of plants on the National Plant Pest Accord list.