Moeraki rabbit management

We are supporting a community response to rabbit management in the Moeraki area by bringing together affected landowners and occupiers to discuss the problem, and collectively work out solutions.

Working in a coordinated manner with your neighbours will help to more effectively reduce rabbit numbers and decrease their impact on the environment.

Rabbits are a priority pest in Otago, and they present complex challenges for pest management.  Under the rules in our Regional Pest Management Plan, all landowners/occupiers in Otago must control feral rabbit densities on the land they occupy if densities exceed our rule limits. 

Plan Rule - An occupier within the Otago region shall control feral rabbit densities on the land they occupy to at or below Level 3 on the Modified McLean Scale (MMS).

Our Biosecurity staff have recently inspected properties throughout the Moeraki area to determine which areas are most affected by rabbits, which properties are managing rabbits well, and which properties require a greater level of control.

Recent inspections undertaken in the Moeraki area have identified which properties have significant densities of rabbits and are likely to be non-compliant. These inspections were carried out by our Biosecurity staff, who are all ‘authorised persons’ under the Biosecurity Act 1993 and are warranted to enter your property for this purpose. The inspections were undertaken on crown and public land as well as private properties.

We are confident that we can, collectively, support better rabbit management in Moeraki with some short-term steps leading to a longer-term solution. Rabbit control needs to be ongoing to ensure continued reduction in numbers.


Proposed Moeraki rabbit management area

Proposed Moeraki rabbit management area


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Email updates

If you haven’t already done so, please register your email address using this form to receive future updates, including any changes to these plans that may be necessary as a result of Covid-19 lockdown restrictions

Community meeting

We held a community meeting to discuss the findings of recent inspections. There was a presentation followed by a Q&A session. We also provided guidance on rabbit management, as well as explaining compliance procedures for property owners that are not meeting their obligations under our Regional Pest Management Plan.

Watch a pre-recorded video of the presentation below.


Next steps

We will follow this meeting with an in-person workshop to assist you with the development of a rabbit management plan for your property. This workshop will be a drop in session rather than a presentation. 

What: Workshop - Rabbit Management Plans

When:  6pm to 8pm, 24 November 2021

Where: Coronation Hall, 41 Haven Street, Moeraki

Download the Rabbit Management Plan Template below

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