Govt’s predator-free pledge – In the News

The Government announced today an ambitious target to make New Zealand predator free by 2050.

possumPrime Minister John Key made the announcement in Wellington’s Zealandia wildlife sanctuary, echoing the call that physicist Sir Paul Callaghan made shortly before his death in 2012.

Key said the Government would invest $28 million over four years to establish a joint venture company: Predator Free New Zealand Ltd. It would be running by early 2017 and focus on identifying large, high-value predator control programmes and attracting co-investors.

A mid-goal of 2025 was set to have all introduced predators eradicated from offshore island nature reserves and suppression of predators across 1 million hectares of mainland New Zealand.

The announcement was widely covered by New Zealand media:

TVNZ: John Key announces ambitious goal for predator-free NZ by 2050 Government sets target to make New Zealand ‘predator-free’ by 2050
Otago Daily Times: Govt reveals plan to be predator-free
Radio NZ: The beginning of the end?
Newshub: Govt wants NZ pest-free by 2050
NZ Herald: ‘Predator free’ by 2050? Predator-free New Zealand ‘unrealistic’ – NZ First
Radio NZ: Predator-free drive: ‘Game changer’ or ecological blunder?
Newshub: Anti-cat campaigner Gareth Morgan backs predator-free drive
Newshub: Possums beware: Maggie ‘biggest killer’ Barry wants you dead
Radio NZ: Predator Free NZ – ambitious and under-funded
TVNZ: Ambitious predator-free plan relying on future scientific breakthroughs
Newstalk ZB: Maggie Barry: Govt has been working towards a pest-free NZ for years
Newstalk ZB: Govt announce plan to make NZ pest-free by 2050
Hawke’s Bay Today: Cash to give pests run for money
NZ Herald: Scientists fret about long-term support for pest programme ‘Impossible to say’ if predator-free 2050 is realistic, experts say 

It was also picked up by international media, including:

The Guardian: No more rats: New Zealand to exterminate all introduced predators
BBC: New Zealand aims to become predator-free by 2050
Shanghai Daily: New Zealand tolls death knell for predators in bid to stem extinction rates
NPR: Call The Pied Piper: New Zealand Wants To Get Rid Of Its Rats. All Of Them For Kiwis’ Sake New Zealand Declares War on Rats
Time: Rats, Possums and Stoats Beware! New Zealand Goes to War Against Invasive Pests
Australian Geographic: New Zealand wants to be ‘predator-free’ by 2050
New Scientist: New Zealand to wipe out all rats as part of alien eradication
ABC News: New Zealand to eradicate rats, possums in bid to save native wildlife
National Geographic: New Zealand announces plan to wipe out invasive predators