Biodiversity monitoring

Alpine zone

In 2016 we began a programme of monitoring in the alpine zone with the following components:

  • Using tracking tunnels to monitor the abundance of two species of our specialist alpine fauna - Mt Arthur giant weta, Deinacrida tibiospina and Mt Arthur gecko, Woodworthia 'Mt Arthur' each summer
  • Monitoring abundance of predators in marble and scree habitats using tracking tunnels
  • Developing an understanding of alpine ecosystem functioning through annual phenology (flowering and fruiting of main plant types) studies and pellet counts.

The tussock mast in the 2019/20 season has resulted in a huge presence of mice (and some rats) in the alpine zone. We have started a trial of laser-triggered cameras (Critterpics) to help identify the species which pass through the tracking tunnels.

As we gather more information it will be used alongside alpine monitoring elsewhere to determine if additional action is needed to protect biodiversity in this habitat.

Other monitoring

We monitor how native biodiversity is faring. We monitor whio breeding success by stream-walk surveys of the Flora and Grecian, we monitor the number of forest birds using a series of 5 minute bird counts and presence/absence counts and the number of Powelliphanta snails in quadrats . All this information is used to determine if our pest control is adequate.