It’s less than 5 weeks before we sail!
Preparations for departure are taking place in a number of places this month. The bait for the eradication starts manufacture later this week in Wanganui at Animal Control Products. Next week some of the team will be heading to Timaru to receive the first truck load of bait and practice loading the 25 kg bait bags into waterproof wooden pods. In early May a group of supporters from the Barton Rural School near Timaru will help us with the main effort of loading the 65 tonne of bait into the pods, ready for transport to the Antipodes and storage until the weather allows us to start spreading it.
Meanwhile in Invercargill, a few of the team are completing working at heights training. As you may have seen in the video last week the helicopters will be craned inside the hold of the cargo ship (Norfolk Guardian) where they are protected during transport to the island. Over the weekend we completed measuring up the helicopters to finalise the location of additional security points for tying the helicopters down. The last thing we want is for a helicopter to break loose in large seas and get damaged.
The team in Invercargill is also busily preparing and quarantining gear and equipment. Next week the Norfolk Guardian will undergo a hull clean to allow it to go into the Marine Reserve around the Antipodes for offloading our gear.
Sarah Jane O’Connor has written an interesting article on the efforts to remove rats from Campbell Island in the Dominion Post on the 18th of April. With essential support of our public donors and the Project’s Partners (The Morgan Foundation, WWF-New Zealand and Island Conservation) we aim to keep pushing the boundaries and add to that story with the successful removal of mice from the Antipodes.
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