Northlanders are being urged to make sure they secure their belongings and record all identifying details of trailers, quad bikes and boats as the summer theft season begins.

Christian Stainton, Acting Senior Sergeant for the Mid and Far North police, said in the lead-up to Christmas and the summer holidays thieves typically started targeting boats, trailers, quad bikes, jet skis and outboard motors.

''Pretty much anything that can be moved or put on a trailer is really targeted at this time of year.''

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The thefts were fuelled by greater availability of such items as people headed north for the summer holidays.

He urged people to photograph their property and record all identifying details, such as the identification numbers stamped on to plates and welded on to the frames of trailers.

Thieves could easily change a trailer's registration plate but police could still find the rightful owner via the manufacturer's identification tags — as long as the owner had made a note of the number.

It was also a good idea to secure trailers with padlocks or wheel locks and to chain up quad bikes.

''It's inconvenient to chain them up, but it's even more inconvenient to lose your quad bike and have to go through the insurance claim process,'' Stainton said.

He also urged boaties not to leave items such as fishing rods, lifejackets and navigation equipment on board their vessels.

''People get complacent just because their gear hasn't been taken before,'' he said.

Holiday and industrial areas were commonly targeted at this time of year but suburban streets weren't immune.

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''It might be a nice residential area but that doesn't mean people with bad intentions won't go there. Make sure your belongings are secure and chained up, or keep them out of sight.''