12th Oct , Puket Forest
We continued down the river after a peaceful night sleep camping high above the river on the grass and moss. Water as you would expect was cold and with no sign of life, in the deeper areas the water was brown probably due to the surrounding vegetation.
Once out of the river, we climbed to the top of the bank and traveled along the river edge a few hours were we saw many possum traps, probable over thirty I’d think. They looked like white letter boxes but if you looked inside you could see the trap and the bait. I guess it works like a extra large mouse trap so as we carried along the track we would see many traps with a possum hanging from them.
As we walked along the path, we would occasionally see the odd trap damaged, first I though it was just fallen tree branches doing the damage but the pattern was that you would see a dead possum hanging from a trap then for the next couple of traps would be damaged. Became very clear a hiker with no knowledge about the threat these pest have to our native plant and species in New Zealand were thinking they were doing the right thing but breaking these traps up. Later I was told about the government plan to eradicate these possums pest that were imported from Australia by 2050 along with other pests.
The smell was bad on the older possums that had been there for a while and some times you could see the remains of them after the wild pigs got to them for a free meal.
The day was long, from 9am to 6pm arriving with no water.