After a successful training session recently at Waipoua Forest, 23 hunting dogs have become repelled by the scent of kiwi, ensuring they will not see them as a potential food source if they become disorientated.
The kiwi aversion training was arranged between Kaitiaki Kiwi Waipoua, Tom and Karina Donovan and biodiversity supervisor DOC Kauri Coast, Megan Topia.
“Kiwi aversion training does not mean that your dog is suddenly safe around kiwi — it is an extra tool on top of good dog control for dogs that may come into contact with kiwi, such as hunting or farm dogs,” said a spokesperson from Kaitiaki Kiwi.
The training is an opportunity to encourage kiwi friendly hunting practices, including having well-trained pig dogs that hunt only pigs, not taking pups in training into kiwi zones, and take all possible action to locate lost dogs.
“We provide kauri dieback hygiene packs that have sterigene spray and brushes to give to hunters, and talk about how they can help reduce the risk of them spreading the disease,” said biodiversity supervisor DOC Kauri Coast, Megan Topia.
Kaitiaki Kiwi runs two free kiwi aversion training days a year, in May and November, to promote good dog control and hunting practices in and around kiwi areas.
For anyone wanting to take part in a training programme more immediately, Taheke Land Care is holding an event on Sunday, December 9, at 463 Pataua North Road, Tahere.
Contact Ian at 09 434 4217 or firstname.lastname@example.org.