The Environmental Protection Authority (EPA) has released its eighth annual report on the aerial use of 1080.
Findings are consistent with previous years and show the 1080 regime is working as intended with the benefits of using 1080 being seen while the risks are minimised.
The latest report shows there were 58 reports of aerial 1080 operations in 2014, covering 967,012 hectares. This is a similar number of operations to the 2013 year but over a larger area, mainly as a result of a combination of the cycle of pest control operations and the Department of Conservation’s Battle for our Birds programme.
There were six breaches of the Hazardous Substances and New Organisms (HSNO) Act in 2014. This is down from eight breaches in 2013. There were two public incidents, the same number as for 2013.
Incidents were due to a range of factors including probable public interference, public trespass and threats made to operation staff.
1080, also known as sodium fluoroacetate, is used to control animal pests such as possums, rabbits, stoats and rats, to reduce the impacts on native animals and plants, and to prevent the spread of bovine tuberculosis.
Aerial application uses aircraft to distribute baits and is considered by users to be a key advantage where pest control is undertaken on rugged or remote land.
You can see the annual report here