Download The Wellington App for more stories like this.

Weasel popped at Zealandia

Zealandia has successfully trapped the weasel discovered inside the protected wildlife sanctuary last week.

The female weasel was found in a DOC200 humane kill trap today by a Zealandia Ranger, at the southern end of the sanctuary where the animal was first detected.

Conservation and Research Manager Dr Danielle Shanahan was delighted with the result.

“I’m really proud of our team here, and the wide range of partners who have supported us. We’ve managed to detect and respond to this really quickly, dramatically reducing the risk to our wildlife,” said Shanahan.

However she was quick to add that it’s not all over yet.

“We’ll continue to monitor things closely, keeping traps, camera traps and tracking tunnels out there until we’re convinced that it was just the one animal.”

The weasel’s footprints were first discovered on Monday 1 October, launching a sanctuary-wide incursion response. Around 110 DOC200 traps were set in the urban wildlife sanctuary, baited with rabbit meat and eggs. Camera traps were also set, capturing the weasel on video three times at the same location.

It is still unknown exactly how the weasel entered the sanctuary, and staff will continue to thoroughly check the 8.6km predator fence.