There have been numerous declines and extinctions of native fauna in Aotearoa New Zealand since human settlement. Against this background of loss there have been remarkable advances in conservation management, including the use of conservation translocations to reduce extinction risk and restore depauperate ecosystems. Here we review conservation translocations in Aotearoa New Zealand.
Translocations are becoming increasingly common although the effectiveness of this conservation tool for amphibians is highly variable. We reviewed ten translocations of Leiopelma frogs occurring between 1924 and 2016. Data were gathered on factors which may have influenced translocation outcomes. Results at each location were measured against an established four-step framework for stages of success: survival of individuals, reproduction, population growth, and population viability.
The use of translocations for conservation management has increased in frequency over recent decades. Though many early translocations were carried out as one-off management exercises, the need to test release strategies and gain knowledge in order to improve future reintroductions has been recognised. This study examined both the movements and survival of 101 Leiopelma hamiltoni (Anura: Leiopelmatidae) translocated to Long Island, New Zealand, and the response of the source population on Te Pākeka/Maud Island to the removal of a discrete subset of frogs.
Translocations of kiwi (Apteryx spp.) are one of the most common and growing types of conservation translocations in New Zealand. However, their outcomes remain mostly unpublished, which does not allow for sharing of lessons learnt from past developments. We reviewed 102 kiwi translocations from the 19th century until 2018, and identified factors affecting their outcome. North Island brown kiwi (A.