An intensive and spatially comprehensive rodent detection check will be carried out by the Lord Howe Island Board between 8-26 July 2023.
This ‘Checkpoint’ aims to confirm the absence of black rats and house mice on the island. It is an important ecological milestone in the Island's eradication process, following the REP effort of 2019 and response of 2021.
An announcement of outcomes is expected by September 2023. The results will be analysed by leading experts in rodent eradication, the Island Eradication Advisory Group of the New Zealand Department of Conservation (IEAG).
Following the Checkpoint, the Board will review the biosecurity measures in place on LHI.
How will the program be run?
A sweep of the settlement area will take place with rodent detection dogs.
An array of search grids and transects will also be set up throughout the Permanent Park Preserve sampling a range of environments from north to south.
Long-term data from the existing biosecurity surveillance network will be compiled and referenced during the operation, and in the Checkpoint report.
During the program, the Board’s ongoing biosecurity surveillance at the airport and jetty will continue as usual.