This study investigates the hypothesis that tomtits are significantly less susceptible to 1080 poison operations when cereal rather than carrot bait applications are used, both at relatively low sowing rates. We made counts of territorial male tomtits along transects during standard 1080 possum control operations in 2001 to 2003. The transects had 3Ð5 kg ha-1 sowing rates of either carrot or cereal baits.
This study aimed to estimate the level of mortality of North Island tomtits (Petroica macrocephala toitoi) during an aerial 1080 possum poisoning operation in Tongariro Forest, New Zealand, and to evaluate transect-based alternatives to banding for monitoring tomtit populations. The operation used 12 g toxic (1080 at 0.15% weight/weight) cereal baits sown at 3 kg/ha. Transects were established at three neighbouring sites; two within the 1080 poison area, and one outside.
Aerial poisoning operations with carrot or cereal baits are used to control brushtail possum (Trichosurus vulpecula) populations in New Zealand forests for ecosystem conservation and to stop the spread of bovine tuberculosis to cattle and deer herds on adjacent farmland. Although various measures have been implemented to reduce the incidence of bird kills, dead birds continue to be found after poison operations.