Clarence Valley deer repellent trial update

Date 16 August 2019

A TBfree disease control operation in the Clarence Valley was successfully completed earlier this month. The operation is part of the TBfree programme’s goal to eradicate TB from New Zealand cattle and deer herds and also wildlife.  

As part of the aerial 1080 possum control operation, a project to test a new deer repellent was also conducted. A factsheet about the trial is available here 

The trial used standard 6-8g cereal baits in one area of the operation, and standard 6-8g cereal baits treated with deer repellent in a comparison area. The trial compares the efficacy of the repellent in limiting deer by-kill during the operation targeted at possums.  

Key points about the trial:  

  • Initial indications are that in the area treated with deer repellent, 50 percent of the deer survived the operation. 

  • In comparison, the area with no deer repellent all radio collared deer died.  

  • Wild deer deaths are expected during possum control operations, exact numbers cannot be confirmed yet 

  • Because the trial is still underway a final result won’t be available until researchers submit a full assessment of the trial. 

  • The deer repellent trial used standard 1080 cereal baits, contrary to some social media commentary. 

 The result of the deer repellent trial will be reported later in 2019.