Wasp WipeOut

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Wasp Wipeout Karamea.

Watch Out Wasps!

Introduced wasps are one of the most damaging insect pests in New Zealand. They harm our native birds and insects. Wasps are also a significant nuisance for people.

The 'Wasp Wipeout' project targets German and common wasp populations in late summer using the Vespex wasp baiting system that reduces wasp numbers by more than 90%.

DOC provides technical expertise and plans and carries out wasp control at priority sites on public conservation land. This helps protect native wildlife. It also helps prevent wasps from being a nuisance to visitors at tracks, huts and picnic spots.

Summer 2019/20

The Wasp Wipeout wasp control programme is being extended in summer 2019/20 to include Auckland and Wellington. It will also continue in Nelson Tasman, Marlborough and parts of Canterbury and the West Coast.

The Tasman Environmental Trust manages donated funds and helps with administration support.

Conservation Volunteers New Zealand coordinates the volunteer enagement that is essential for the programme delivery. Conservation Volunteers New Zealand (CVNZ) is a specialist provider of community engagement and project/programme management throughout New Zealand.

Conservation Volunteers’ activities aim to engage diverse sectors of the community for the purpose of protecting and restoring nature and building social cohesion and environmental stewardship. Their restoration project just south of Punakaiki village is now in its 12th year and planting will very shortly reach the 200,000 trees mark.

As part of the West Coast Wasp Wipeout, CVNZ are keen to establsih bait station lines on a number of the walking tracks in the karamea region. To facilitate this, they are seeking local volunteers who can put up the bait stations, and when the time is right, put out the protein-based bait [Vespex] that is taken back to the wasp nests. Vespex is a NZ developed, low toxicity bait that has proven to be highly effective - but is not attractive to bees.

Ideally, volunteers should be reasonably fit [at least comfortable track walking ] -and of course, not allergic to stings! Typically, volunteers work in pairs -both putting up the bait stations, and also baiting; the former adds about another 50% to the track walking time, the latter not much more than the normal walk time.

Anyone interested should watch the video and read the transcript at this DOC site:


To ‘register’ your willingness to help out, you should email Dave Sharp, CVNZ Wasp Wipeout Manager, on dsharpatcvnz [dot] org [dot] nz

Tracks targeted include:

Oparara - Arch Track and Carpark

Oparara - Mirror Tarn Track and Carpark

Oparara - Moira Gate Track

Oparara - Fenian Link Track

Oparara - Box Canyon Caves Track and Carpark

Heaphy Track - Heaphy Hut

Heaphy Track - Lewis Hut

Heaphy Track - Zig Zig Track

Heaphy Track - Nikau Walk

Heaphy Track - Kohaihai Campsite to Scotts Beach

Kohaihai Campsite

This article has been submitted on Dave’s behalf by Hamish Macbeth (027296 0376) if you have any further queries.


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