23 Jun 2019

Titirangi pest control: Residents urged to support council moves

2:47 pm on 23 June 2019

Auckland Council will increase pest control activity to deal with the wild chicken and rat population in Titirangi.

When beech trees flower and produce large amounts of seed it provides food for pests such as rats.

Auckland Council says it's doing all it can to tackle pests in the region. Photo: 123RF

Locals said they had seen rats "the size of cats" in the west Auckland village, where roaming chickens were a familiar sight.

The council asked people not to feed the chickens, fearing that food scattered on the ground could attract rats and boost their numbers.

It has commissioned a report on chicken control options to go to Waitākere Ranges Local Board next month. It was also looking at the support it can give to locals, including placing traps on private properties.

Auckland Council director of infrastructure and environmental services, Barry Potter, said the council was doing all it could to tackle the issue but the residents had an important role to play in managing the chicken and rat population.

"While the council has authority to act in its parks and open spaces, it is the responsibility of homeowners and businesses to manage pests such as rats, mice and possums on their premises," he said.

Waitākere Ranges local board chair Greg Presland said the board was fully supportive of the measures taken, and was working with the council to find a resolution as soon as possible.

"The board fully understands, and shares, the frustration of the Titirangi community, but we are encouraged by these steps taken by the council," he said.

"We have been actively looking for solutions to this issue for some time and understand that this will have to be a collective effort in order to bring the problem under control."