Aerial assault . . . Possum will be targeted in an aerial programme at Molesworth Station. PHOTO: File

OSPRI is planning an aerial possum control operation in Molesworth Station in May/June 2021 as part of a wider plan to eradicate TB from Molesworth possum populations by 2027.

Drop in sessions will be held in Kaikoura on Wednesday, March 17 and Hanmer Springs on Thursday, March 18, to discuss the proposed operation.

The region has an extensive history of bovine-TB infection in both livestock and wildlife.

Aerial control over a large area and a short timeframe is key to effectively reducing possum numbers to a level where TB cannot be sustained in the wildlife population, says OSPRI.

“This approach also minimises the risk of re-invasion by infected possums.”

OSPRI has taken steps to contain the impact of this operation on non-target species like deer.

The Kaikoura drop-in session will be held in the Memorial Hall 8am to 12 noon. The Church of Epiphany in Hanmer Springs will host the sessions from 12.30pm to 4.30pm.

Due to COVID-19 Alert levels please call OSPRI on 0800 482 463 or email to indicate if you are planning to attend so people can be contacted if the event has to be postponed.