Eradicating bovine TB in NZ

As part of our TBfree programme we deliver our pest control operations through a framework of TB management areas (TMAs). TMAs are areas with known TB infection in livestock or wildlife. Each TMA has a specific TB control plan designed to eradicate TB as effectively as possible.

Map showing boundaries of Molesworth/Clarence Reserve TB management areaThe Molesworth/Clarence Reserve TMA

The Molesworth/Clarence Reserve TMA covers 159,510 hectares west of the southern end of the Inland Kaikoura Range. It includes:

  • part of Molesworth Station
  • the west side of the Clarence Reserve, and
  • the Upper Awatere area.

The habitat is dry grassland interspersed with patches of scrub and bush. Altitudes range from 500 to 2200 metres.

History of TB and pest control in Molesworth/Clarence Reserve

The Molesworth/Clarence Reserve TMA has an extensive history of TB infection in both local wildlife and cattle herds. We found TB infection in possums, ferrets, pigs and deer — most recently in 2018.

We completed ground-based possum control in 2017/2018 in the Upper Awatere Molesworth block, and a ferret survey in the Upper Awatere block in 2015. We also completed aerial possum control in the Upper Awatere block in 2012/2013.

Our most recent pest control work included:

  • aerial control in Molesworth in 2017 and 2021, and
  • ground control in Upper Awatere and Upper Awatere Molesworth in 2019/2020 and 2020/2021.

Current state

There is 1 infected herd in the Molesworth/Clarence TMA.

If you're moving animals

The Molesworth/Clarence Reserve TMA is in the Marlborough/North Canterbury Movement Control Area. Before you move cattle or deer to another herd or farm, you must have them tested for bovine TB.

Future pest control operations

We plan our pest control operations up to 3 years in advance. The current year runs from July 2022 to June 2023.

Dates and control methods for pest control operations in Molesworth/Clarence Reserve are provisional and subject to change. If you’re affected by any upcoming operations, our pest control contractors will contact you before work begins. They will:

  • talk you through the specifics of each operation
  • explain what you need to do before the operations start
  • get your consent for the work to be done.

We will refine proposed boundaries for aerial operations after consulting with landowners and affected parties.

Type of controlWhenCoverageWhere
Aerial control2022/202362,000haMolesworth
Aerial control2022/202360,000haMolesworth
Ground control2022/202336,600haUpper Awatere, Upper Awatere Molesworth, Molesworth
Aerial control2024/202545,900haMolesworth
Ground control2024/202532,000haUpper Awatere, Upper Awatere Molesworth, Molesworth

Map of 2022/2023 pest control operations

The proposed areas for ground control are marked in green on the map, and the proposed area for aerial control is marked in yellow.

Interactive map showing Molesworth/Clarence Reserve TB management area boundaries, Vector Control Zone, and proposed control areas


Vector Free Marlborough manages aerial control operations and Excell Biosecurity manages ground control operations in the Molesworth/Clarence Reserve TMA. Contact them directly if you have feedback or questions about upcoming operations.

Vector Free Marlborough

Phone: 0508 548 008

Excell Biosecurity

Phone: 0508 392 355

Nearest local OSPRI office

OSPRI Christchurch Office
PO Box 8674
Christchurch 8440
Phone: 03 363 3090