A peaceful protest about Department of Conservation use of 1080 poison aerial drops is to be held in Whanganui.

The Anti 1080 Action Ruapehu group have organised a hikoi that will begin at Otoko Marae on the Parapara Rd on Friday.

The group will assemble at Pakaitore (Moutua Gardens) at 9am on Saturday and spend a morning at Whanganui River Markets before taking their protest to Orillion in Heads Rd at 1.30pm.

A spokeswoman for the group says the Orillion factory in Heads Rd is one location where 1080 baits are made and the group believes the public need to be aware of where these factories are.


She says the hikoi is to protest the Government's intention to increase the strength of 1080 baits to 0.15 per cent.

"It takes less than a teaspoon of the poison to kill a child and they will increase the dosage again when they realise that the goal of becoming predator-free by 2050 is beyond reach.

"The Department of Conservation has been failing to work in partnership with iwi and the concept of kaitiakitanga."

Kaitiakitanga means guardianship, protection and preservation in accordance with the traditional Māori worldview of kinship with the land.

"We have attended public consultation meetings with DoC staff but we have not been heard and the hikoi is intended as a peaceful way of raising public awareness."

She says the group's view is that if aerial 1080 dropping was effective, it would have worked by now and increased potency means higher risk to non-target species such as humans and other animals not deemed pests.

"We expect to meet security guards at the Orillion gates and we don't expect to be offered an appointment."

Members of the public can join the hikoi at Pakaitore and more information can be found on the Anti 1080 Action Ruapehu Facebook page.