The call is out for residents living around the Ōtākaro Avon River Corridor to help boost the number of backyard traps and protect the area’s regenerating green spine.

A trap collection day is being held on Tuesday 23 May from 5pm by the Ōtākaro Urban Trapping Project, part of the Richmond Community Garden.

“We’ve become a trapping hub for the area and are managing around 30 traps at the moment, but we’ve got a target of getting 100 in backyards by the end of the year,” Richmond Community Garden Operations Manager and trapping enthusiast Morgane Honore says.

Trapping is an essential part of the restoration process as the Ōtākaro Avon River provides an easy way for rodents to get from the city to the sea.

The network of traps has recently expanded from focussing on the urban Richmond area to the wider OARC zone including the central city, Richmond, Dallington, Southshore and Avonside.

“We’re also on the look out for leaders in other areas around the former red zone to work within their communities, assist people with their traps, encourage sign ups and help us understand what is successful and what is not when it comes to trapping,” she says.

The group received funding and training in health and safety practices from the Council as well as funding from Predator Free New Zealand earlier this year and works closely with red zone rangers.

“Predator control plays a key role in our regeneration plans for the OARC so it’s great to see the community coming together and helping in their own backyard,” Red Zone Manager Dave Little says.

“Along with our planting days, it’s an easy way for residents to get involved in shaping the future of the former red zone.”

If you’re interested, head to the trap collection day on Tuesday 23 May at the Riverlution Eco Hub, 46a Vogel Street, from 5pm.