Regional Pest Management Plan Review
The Proposed Regional Pest Management Plan was available for consultation, 2 February to 16 March 2018. Submissions on the proposal have now closed and decisions are being made to prepare the final plan.
The principle goal of the Regional Pest Management Plan is to limit the adverse effects of unwanted plants, animals, horticultural and marine pests. These invasive species can have wide ranging effects on human health, indigenous flora and fauna, our heritage, or the economy. When finalised, this Plan will supercede the current Regional Pest and Phytosanitary Management Strategies.
Regional pest management sits within a biosecurity framework for the Hawke’s Bay region, which includes:
- this Plan
- the Hawke’s Bay Biodiversity Strategy
- the HBRC Strategic Plan
- neighbouring Regional Pest Management Plans
- national legislation, policy and initiatives.
Positive engagement from the community through the release of a discussion document in 2017 has helped shape this proposed plan. Council has also been working with key stakeholders including farmers, contractors, agencies and members of the community.
Where we are in this process
We are currently at Step 6 - hearings. Hearings will be held on the 5, 6 and 9 of July. Staff are currently responding to all submissions of which submitters will receive a copy mid-June. Please refer to the RPMP Minute 1 document below for further information on the hearing process and procedural matters.
Over the past 15 years, approximately 80% of HBRC’s biosecurity budget has been focussed on pests affecting agricultural production. There is now a growing community expectation for a greater focus on protecting our native species and habitats and to recognise the biodiversity gains achieved from our current programmes. The plan reflects this change in attitude.
Major changes in the proposed plan are -
- Inclusion of marine pest management programme.
- Reduction of the catch trap (RTC) rate in Possum Control Areas from 5% to 4%.
- Addition of a ‘good neighbour’ rule for possums - possums will need to be controlled to 4% RTC within 500m of a boundary of a neighbouring property where a possum control operation is in place.
- Addition of another ‘good neighbour’ rule for feral goats requires responsible management of goats within 500m of a neighbouring property where that property is actively managing feral goats to protect native plantings or biodiversity values.
- Addition of wallabies as an exclusion pest. These are found in neighbouring regions.
- Addition of 6 pest plant species to an exclusion programme, with the aim of preventing them establishing in the Hawke’s Bay region - Noogoora bur, Yellow bristle grass, Alligator weed, Marshwort, Senegal tea, Spartina. These are currently not found in Hawke’s Bay. Cathedral bell and Darwin’s barberry which are in the region have also been included in the plan for the first time.
- A new programme that allows Possum Control Areas to be converted to Predator Control Areas.
Documents for further reading
The discussion document used to inform and develop the plan during 2017 is available below.