Pest Free Piha

A community-led initiative to make Piha weed and predator free


We aim to raise environmental awareness in Piha and progressively establish a network of neighbourhood groups which will rid Piha of predators and weed pests by 2025.


Piha's Environment

Piha has outstanding scenic and landscape values, including the flora and fauna of the Waitakere Ranges, but native species biodiversity is in decline due to habitat loss and the impacts of human settlement, pest animals, plants and pathogens. Pest Free Piha's aim is to reverse these impacts and restore the biodiversity of the Piha village and catchment.


The Threats

The values most at risk at Piha include loss of native bush due to invasive weeds; loss of fauna due to pest animals; loss of kauri to dieback disease; sand dune degradation due to pests, including exotic plant colonisation and rabbit browse, as well as trampling; health risks posed by wasps, possums, hedgehogs etc; negative lifestyle impacts of Argentine ants, wasps, rodents and pest plants; and declining asset values due to weed presence generally.

Piha provides a unique example of where being pest free can be achieved at lower cost than elsewhere and can confer greater regional benefits than at other locations. This is because Piha is essentially a small island of high pest indices surrounded by a great area of lower pest indices (the Waitakere Ranges Regional Park) and the Tasman Sea, meaning that currently rats, mice, rabbits, hedgehogs, Argentine ants, wasps and most weeds all tend to radiate out from Piha rather than come in from outside.

Maintenance of pest free borders can therefore be achieved at lower cost than in other locations. Furthermore, any effort at Piha would assist in reducing pest threats to the Park (and their cost), and essentially pilot options for Auckland Council’s (AC) recently declared Pest Free Auckland, establishing a baseline and monitoring and evaluation progress.


Our Work

We help get volunteer groups set up in every neighbourhood to tackle both weed pests and predators.


Hands On

There are several community-led efforts in Piha – the weed groups that begun in Rayner, Garden and Beach Valley roads; the dune restoration by Piha CoastCare; the predator control at Te Waha protecting the grey-faced petrels in their burrows; the Our Backyard Piha Project tackling climbing asparagus; the volunteers helping the rangers each week; our dotterel minders and the many individuals already dealing with pest weeds on their properties and undertaking rat and possum control.

Pest Free Piha aims to bring all this effort together in a more organised and strategic approach.

Get Involved

Keen to make Piha a better place? Fill the form below or visit our Facebook page.