Getting Started 


 What Trap do I use?

This will depend on what you want to catch. Mostly this will be rats which means an inexpensive rat trap will do the job. If you want to catch mustelids as well then you will need something more substantial, like a DOC 200. Possums will also need a different trap, usually with a different bait. Full details here:

Where can I buy a trap?

As well as local stores like Hunting and Fishing and the farm supply stores, Predator Free Taupo has traps available - check out our Trap Library. Contact Robin Ellis for more details -

How do I record my catches?

Trap.NZ is the national recording database. Trap.NZ has been developed with the support of WWF and Groundtruth Limited.  It has been operating since 2014 and is used by over 380 groups throughout New Zealand.

Trap Management Tips

When handling traps and especially baits it is best to use disposal gloves as human scent deters predators of upwards 10 days, especially in vegetation blocks.   Traps set in backyard are not as susceptible to human scent due to human contamination around the area.  

Use seasonal baits ie eggs especially in spring/summer when birds etc are laying. In the winter meat based lures like chicken/ rabbit are better especially for stoat traps.

Place traps in run pathways (especially for stoats) eg fence lines, edge of pathways to vegetation and borders of vegetation especially if there are animals tracks. For rats place near woodsheds (especially in winter) or anywhere warm and around compost heaps where there may be organic waste.

DOC 200 Tips and Tricks


Because mice are not very heavy they can scavenge the bait in your DOC 200 without triggering the trap.  One solution for this is to put a mouse trap in the front of the trap. To avoid the mouse trap finishing up in the DOC 200 (and being destroyed) your mouse trap needs to be secured somehow. The Pest Off brand has a couple of holes on the back corners. This means it can sit on a small nail to secure it but you are also able to lift it out, enabling easy resetting and rebaiting.

A small galvinised nail protruding from the side of the trap will keep Erase (dehydrated rabbit) of the floor of the trap and make the bait last longer.

The photo to the right shows a ribbon fixed to the business end of the trap. This is drawn into the trap when it goes off so you can see from a distance if your trap has been sprung. You just need to be aware that the ribbon does not get jammed when you screw the lid back down.