The arrival of spring has signalled the arrival of lawnmower thieves in Hawke's Bay - with the number of thefts beginning to rise along with temperatures.
"We see it every spring," Napier police law enforcement team analyst Sandra McMurray said.
There had been three lawnmower thefts, one of them a ride-on mower, reported in Napier over the past week.
Mower thefts had also been reported in Hastings.
Garden implements, including motorised weed trimmers, were also being taken.
Some thieves were almost brazen about their activities, Ms McMurray said.
There had been occasions where police had come across people openly wheeling lawnmowers from where they had taken them, to their homes.
"They will also often use the green belts and alleyways - we have had some catches."
Thefts were taking place during the day and at night, and in some cases police had discovered sheds and garages had not been locked.
A by-product of thieves entering garages looking for mowers and garden implements had been a rise in the theft of bicycles.
Among recent thefts were two specialised competition bicycles valued at $4500 and $7500. Only one had been recovered.
Garden furniture and portable barbecue sets were also on the spring hit list, Ms McMurray said.
She said anyone spotting an unfamiliar vehicle on or near a property, or people acting suspiciously in their neighbourhood, should call police immediately and take registration numbers if possible.