Award winning duo gets set for Fieldays 2017

Rotorua Canopy Tours is teaming up with Goodnature for Fieldays 2017.

The innovative duo will be demonstrating Goodnature automated animal traps and helping solve your pest problems at home or on farm. Rotorua Canopy Tours and Goodnature can be found in the Lifestyle Marquee at Fieldays 2017.

Rotorua Canopy Tours has been operating for just under 5 years and in this time has really made its mark in the tourism industry. Last year we took out the Supreme Award at the New Zealand Tourism Awards as well as the Visitor Experience Award and Environmental Awards. A large part of the success of the business is down to the conservation efforts that Rotorua Canopy Tours has put in place in the Dansey Road Scenic Reserve where we operate the zipline tours.

Photo: Guide Pip installing Goodnature A24 at Rotorua Canopy Tours.

Conservation was always part of the plans when James Fitzgerald, Managing director, began Rotorua Canopy Tours. As James and the team soon came to realize it wasn’t going to be cheap, over the first year of operating zipline tours we saved up $35,000 and were able to put a trapping operation in place throughout 50ha of the Dansey Road Scenic Reserve in 2013. The operation was incredibly successful, and the Rotorua Canopy Tours team pulled over 800 animals such as rats, possum and stoats out of the forest in the first two weeks. Although successful in the removal of pests, this way of trapping was flawed. All of the 1100 traps that were dispersed in the forest were manual, this meant that every trap had to be cleared and reset after catching one animal. Needless to say this method was not practical for a company running a new business, guides were not available to attend to traps daily and we started to run out of funding for the operation. James headed back to the drawing board and that was when the partnership began with Goodnature.

goodnature-fieldays-2017Photo: James Fitzgerald out checking how many possums were caught after the first installment of Goodnature traps.

Goodnature started 13 years ago by Robbie van Dam, Stu Barr and Craig Bond. They knew that the biggest challenge in conservation in New Zealand was controlling the numbers of invasive animal predators. Knowing the flaws of manual pest traps, the Goodnature team went about designing the first ever automatic self resetting animal trap. After two very different prototypes and three months of testing, the Goodnature A12 possum trap was born. The Best Awards recognised the Goodnature team for the A24 Rat Trap & Automatic Lure Pump and awarded them the Best Effort Purple Pin for improving DOC’s capability in our forests and lowering the cost of pest management throughout NZ. In July 2015 the Department of Conservation approved Goodnature traps as being effective against rats and possums. Rotorua Canopy Tours decided to substantially invest in this new technology and introduced both the A24 and A12 Goodnature traps into our trapping programme.fielddays-new-zealand-2017

Photo: The Goodnature and Rotorua Canopy Tours team with the animals pulled from the 180ha of the forest in 2016.

Rotorua Canopy Tours removed the manual traps from the forest in 2015 before installing Goodnature automated self setting traps throughout 100ha of the forest. In 2016, we further extended the trapped area after such success with the Goodnature traps. Currently Rotorua Canopy Tours has 180ha of the forest trapped and will be extending the project again this winter. With the removal of pests the forest has flourished and a safe zone has been created where native birds, insects and reptiles are coming to live and breed safely.

Many of the Rotorua Canopy Tours guides were amazed with the results from the Goodnature traps, they have installed them in their homes throughout the Bay of Plenty and now have native wildlife flourishing in their own back yards. Come and see us in the Lifestyle Marquee at Fieldays to learn about how you can use Goodnature rat and possum traps to remove pests from your home, lifestyle block or farm, or create a conservation sanctuary in your backyard.

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