Evidence of Predation by Kiore Upon Lizards from the Mokohinau Islands
- 82 Exmouth Road, Northcote, Auckland, 9, New Zealand
The kiore or Polynesian rat (Rattus exulans) has been suggested as the probable cause for reduced reptile, seabird and invertebrate faunas on many of the northern offshore islands of New Zealand, but the evidence is largely circumstantial and it is based on comparisons between islands with and without kiore. In 1977, kiore colonised a small island in the Mokohinau Group (Hauraki Gulf), where they caused a dramatic drop in lizard numbers. Their impact upon seabirds appeared minimal. Kiore were subsequently removed by poisoning; the altered lizard fauna remaining suggests that some species were more susceptible to rat predation than others.