The PCE report on saving New Zealand birds discusses three areas of research into predator control that rely on genetic science, and notes that approaches relying on genetic modification are likely to encounter strong opposition from some.
Dr Wright says for this reason, informed and early discussion will be essential, and should not only cover the risks associated with such methods but also the promise they hold - the widespread and potential eradication of the predators that are killing many millions of birds and other native wildlife every year.
In response to this upcoming issue, the Royal Society of New Zealand has set up a panel of experts on gene editing. Dr Wright also recommends the Government develop a programme of staged engagement with the general public on the potential uses of genetic techniques to control predators.
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