Rodent baiting in WaNZ projects use 1st generation Diphacinone baits, a humane and low residue form of toxin. Positioning of stations is key to successful coverage ….
How to set rodent bait stations
Attractive palatable baits
Bait for long enough to ensure all animals encounter bait
Bait at times when animals are not breeding and natural food is short
Where possible rotate baits annually
Monitor pests and desired outcomes
Adapt to observed conditions
The grid approach is the best method to ensure full coverage. The key to excellent pest control is full coverage, well presented attractive palatable baits, and “Contact Time” which is the bait being left out for long enough to ensure that every target animal has encountered it and timing in relation to the best time of year to place the poison. The correct timing for each species varies but generally is away from their breeding season and when natural food sources are less abundant.
Ideal spacings to ensure all rats encounter baits are 50m x 50m grids – this will result in local eradications “quickly” if you use an anti-coagulant bait. DoC for example eradicated Norway rats off Rakino Island in the Hauraki Gulf with a 50 x 50 grid using brodifacoum in August 2002. Bait take stopped within approx 14 days. Stations were checked and replenished if required every two days. You can expect local eradications on the mainland with that grid spacing used June – August. They had two trials where this has occurred with diphacinone based bait. Bait stations were checked every four to five days.
The other main advantage with the June to August timing for rats is that it gives the birds a chance at breeding time. http://www.wildaboutnz.co.nz/2012/05/rodent-baiting/This timing should allow a greater number of chicks to fledge.
Two types of bait and station are currently in use in WaNZ projects:
1. Tube stations and Ditrac
2.Feeture Tunnels and RatAbate Striker Block