Page 110

2.4. International Projects 27. Kiritimati Island wildlife protection Location: Kiritimati Island, Republic of Kiribati

Partner Organisation: Wildlife Conservation Unit – Republic of Kiribati

Project Objective:

The Republic of Kiribati contains important populations of two Endangered seabirds Phoenix Petrel (Pterodroma alba) and White-Throated Storm Petrel (Nesofregetta fuliginosa). Additionally, the Kiritimati Reed-warbler (Acrocephalus aequinoctialis) is now restricted to Kiritimati and Washington Islands. The main threat to these species is predation by introduced mammals, particularly cats and rats. In September 2012, a veterinary team from Auckland Zoo travelled to the island to carry-out spay and neuter clinics at three villages. Over 100 cats were desexed during this trip and a number of feral or sick cats were humanely euthanized. Wildlife Conservation Unit (WCU) staff on the island were trained in veterinary techniques including male cat neuters and humane euthanasia, to enable them to conduct their own similar clinics in the future. This initial visit was at the request of the Wildlife Conservation Unit staffs (who are part of the Kiribati Government) and the trip was funded by the Secretariat for Pacific Regional Environmental Programmes (SPREP). Project Description:

In June 2013, Auckland Zoo’s Manager of Veterinary Services and Pest Control Officer re-visited Kiritimati Island to conduct further spay and neuter clinics, assist with developing strategic pest control plans and assist with direct pest eradication in Protected Wildlife Areas. Over 50 cats were desexed during clinic sessions held at Roland and Banana villages. WCU vets trained by Auckland Zoo staff during the last visit were supervised in the training of new veterinary technicians and a review of WCU staff capacity to run and maintain clinics was undertaken. Longer-term strategic planning regarding pest control and the best options for cat reproductive control and management on the island was carried out with various key stakeholders including WCU staff, regional expert Ray Pearce (Eco Oceania), the Mayor of Kirimati Island, SPREP representatives and Island Council animal wardens. New monitoring and trapping techniques were introduced that should increase the efficiency of the pest control programme and also improve animal welfare. Assistance was also provided with the Yellow Crazy Any monitoring and eradication programme and a number of 110

Profile for Auckland Zoo

Auckland Zoo Field Conservation Report 2013/14  

Auckland Zoo field conservation report - 2013 / 2014

Auckland Zoo Field Conservation Report 2013/14  

Auckland Zoo field conservation report - 2013 / 2014

Advertisement