Dog attacks kill three kiwi on Kawau Island
A third kiwi death due to a dog attack on Kawau Island, in a month, has the Department of Conservation saying enough.
"We're telling Kawau residents, directly through door knocking and through the Kawau Island Residents and Ratepayers Association, that a dog or dogs are killing kiwi on the island and it has to stop," DOC Auckland Operations Manager Keith Gell said.
Two of the dead kiwi were found in the Kawau Island Historic Reserve, the area of the island managed by DOC, at Dispute Cove area.
One on Copper Mine Track leading to the historic Copper Mine Engine House and the other at the Copper Mine Lookout.
Both kiwi were found to have died from multiple bone fractures and internal injuries after being bitten by a dog and violently shaken.
Another bird has been found dead at School House Bay during the weekend. The body will be sent to Massey University's Wildbase Hospital pathology unit for a necropsy - a post mortem on an animal.
"It's deeply disappointing to find a dog attack has killed these kiwi. These deaths can be prevented if owners keep their dogs under control,"
"We need all dog owners to ensure their dogs are kept under control at all times. If dogs are left to roam, they will kill kiwi," Gell said.
"It's essential Kawau residents, in particular, keep their dogs under control at all times, day and night. They're privileged to have kiwi living right on their doorstep. With this privilege comes the responsibility of ensuring their dogs are not left to roam the island and kill kiwi,"
DOC staff on Kawau are now patrolling the reserve during the day and at night looking for the dog or dogs responsible for the attacks.
A resident was charged in 2009 after dogs killed 14 endangered weka in the reserve.
Being the owner of dogs that attack and kill protected wildlife - carries a maximum penalty of three years in jail and/or a $20,000 fine
DOC manages around 10 per cent of the 2000 hectare island. The rest is privately owned with 70 to 80 permanent residents and about 300 holiday homes.