A wild cat has apparently been spotted on two pest free islands in the Hauraki Gulf.
On Tuesday, two members of the public reported separate sightings of a black cat on Motutapu and Rangitoto Islands. These two islands are connected by a short bridge.
The Department of Conservation (DOC) sent two conservation dogs, their handler and other staff to the islands to investigate.
There are about 18 threatened, nationally vulnerable takahē on Motutapu, as well as nationally critical shore plover, nationally vulnerable dotterels and at-risk brown kiwi.
DOC Auckland inner islands operations manager Keith Gell said 17 traps had been set in the Islington Bay area, near where the cat was sighted.
The cat must have come ashore by boat. It was possibly a stow away, or may have been deliberately dumped.
He hoped the cat would be enticed into the baited trap – which would catch, rather than kill it.