Restricted Invasive Animals of the Burdekin.

Common Restricted Invasive Animals in the Burdekin

Listed below are some of the problematic restricted invasive pest animals commonly found in the Burdekin Shire Council region.   Feral Pig (Sus scrofa) Feral pigs are difficult to control for a number of reasons, they are intelligent, adaptable and secretive. As they are nocturnal, they camp through the day in thick, inaccessible vegetation wherever [...]

Listed below are some of the problematic restricted invasive pest animals commonly found in the Burdekin Shire Council region.

 

Feral Pig

Feral Pig

Feral Pig (Sus scrofa)

Feral pigs are difficult to control for a number of reasons, they are intelligent, adaptable and secretive. As they are nocturnal, they camp through the day in thick, inaccessible vegetation wherever possible.  Their reproduction potential is such that repeated control programs must be conducted before any sustained population reduction is achieved.  Their omnivorous feeding habits give pigs a wide range of available food sources and their home ranges are large (2-50 km2) so control programs must be conducted over a large area (often including several properties) to be effective. Feral pigs inhabit about 40% of Australia, from subalpine grasslands to monsoonal floodplains.  Greatest concentrations are in larger drainage basins, and swamp areas of coast and inland.   Feral pigs are found in most areas of Queensland.  Females and juveniles usually live in small family groups, while adult males are typically solitary.  Some feral pigs can produce two litters of 4-10 piglets a year in good conditions.  Piglets can be weaned after 2-3 months.  See Councils webpage for Subsidies for assistance in controlling feral pigs

 

For more information about Feral Pigs refer to the Department of Agriculture and Fisheries website at:

https://www.daf.qld.gov.au/__data/assets/pdf_file/0005/70925/IPA-Feral-Pigs-Qld-PP6.pdf

 

Wild Dog

Wild Dog

Wild Dogs (Canis familiaris, C. familiaris dingo, C. lupus familiaris, C. lupus dingo)

Wild Dog (Canis familiaris) The term ‘wild dog’ refers to purebred dingoes, dingo hybrids, and domestic dogs that have escaped or been deliberately released and now live in the wild.  The dingo is a primitive canid related to wolves. It was not part of the ancestral fauna of Australia. Though its origins are not clear, it is thought to have arrived in Australia 3,500-4,000 years ago.    The dingo is a restricted invasive animal under the Biosecurity Act 2014.

Wild dogs are found in varied habitats and use roads, creeks and fence lines as travel ways.  Higher activity of wild dogs will be common in autumn (mating season).  They are found throughout Queensland, in far western areas, many wild dogs/dingoes are purebred, but close to settled areas, most dingoes are hybrid dogs.  Wild dogs usually breed once a year, from April to June with a 9-week gestation and usually 4-6 pups in a litter. Animal affected are livestock, domestic dogs, humans and native animals.  See Councils webpage for Subsidies for assistance in controlling wild dogs.

 

For more information about Wild Dogs refer to the Department of Agriculture and Fisheries website at:

https://www.daf.qld.gov.au/__data/assets/pdf_file/0003/74487/IPA-Dingo-Wild-Dog-Control-PA10.pdf

 

Deer

Deer

Chital Deer (Axis axis)

Deer have been classified as a restrictive invasive animal under the Biosecurity Act 2014. Deer have to be kept under certain conditions to be classified as farmed deer. Breaches of these conditions classifies the deer as a pest.  The Biosecurity Act requires everyone to take all reasonable and practical steps to minimise the risks associated with invasive plants and animals under their control.  This is called a General Biosecurity Obligation (GBO)

Chital deer (Axis axis) were introduced to Rita Island in the 1970’s and during years of drought, such as we are experiencing now, have increased in population with a corresponding increase in damage to land and crops.

Council has been working with landholders on Rita Island to address the Feral Deer problem currently being experienced that is affecting crops and grass for stock feed.

In August 2015 Council engaged the services of a contractor with experience in pest animals and followed this up with a meeting with landholders on September 2015 to start determining a way forward. The notes from the meeting are available using the following link:

Following the meeting Council has been in contact with various organisations and businesses to gather information on cost effective ways to address the feral deer problem.

On 13 October 2015 the contractor’s report was submitted to Council and Council adopted the following recommendations in line with the report.  In order of preference the options are:

  • Trapping
  • Aerial shooting (including mustering)
  • Ground shooting
  • Exclusion fencing
  • Barrier fencing

The above plan is not rigid and may change with a change in circumstances to ensure the most appropriate control option in being implemented.

Trapping is currently being organised and should commence shortly.

The full report from FeralFix is available using the following link

Council will continue to provide updates as available.

 

For more information about Wild Dogs refer to the Department of Agriculture and Fisheries website at:

https://www.daf.qld.gov.au/__data/assets/pdf_file/0008/61586/IPA-Chital-Deer-Factsheet.pdf

 

Control Options for Restricted Invasive Animals in the Burdekin

When choosing a control option, landowners may need to seek advice from Burdekin Shire Council Pest Management Officers or Biosecurity Queensland.   Shooting Shooting is a costly control method and is generally only effective in controlling individual animals remaining after a baiting program, or targeting bait or trap-shy animals. Animal welfare requirements need to be addressed [...]

When choosing a control option, landowners may need to seek advice from Burdekin Shire Council Pest Management Officers or Biosecurity Queensland.

 

Shooting

Shooting is a costly control method and is generally only effective in controlling individual animals remaining after a baiting program, or targeting bait or trap-shy animals. Animal welfare requirements need to be addressed when shooting.  Aerial shooting for feral pigs is currently conducted by council at least once a year in target areas.

 

Fencing

Well-designed fences can reduce livestock and crop predation. They are most effective when used with other methods of damage control such as baiting, trapping or livestock guard animals.

Types of fences include mesh, netting, electric and designs that overhang to prevent cats and foxes from climbing over.

Fencing can provide protection from pest animals. The initial expense is high and ongoing maintenance is required but the benefits can be long term.

 

Trapping

Trapping can be time-consuming and costly, but it can be effective in dealing with small pest populations and individual or bait-shy animals. Trapping can also be used in areas where poisons are inappropriate, or as a follow-up to poisoning programs. Traps may include cage traps, self-mustering and    silo/mesh traps, leg-hold and foot-hold traps, and collar restraining devices.  Animal welfare requirements need to be addressed during trapping programs.  Council is in possession of three feral pig traps that are available to lend to landholders, providing a customer request is completed by calling Customer Service on (07) 4783 9800.

 

Baiting

A coordinated baiting program using 1080 is the most cost-effective option for broad scale reduction of large pest populations of wild dogs, feral pigs and foxes.      1080 or sodium fluoroacetate is found naturally in about 30 species of Australian plants.  1080 is registered for the control of wild dogs, feral pigs, rabbits and foxes. It is the most efficient, economical and species-selective chemical currently available for pest animal control in Australia.  Strychnine is an extract from seeds of Strychnos plant species. It is a fast-acting chemical registered for wild dog and fox control.  The use of strychnine is strictly regulated, and landowners are required to obtain a permit from Queensland Health before they can obtain, possess or use the chemical.  Council undertakes 1080 baiting for control of wild dogs and feral pigs.  A co-ordinated wild dog baiting programme is held in October/November each year by Councils Pest Management Officers.  Landholders requiring to bait outside of these times should contact Council’s Pest Management Officers on (07) 4783 9800.

Note: Restrictions apply for accessing 1080 poison. For more information on 1080 regulations and restrictions visit Biosecurity Queensland website.  For further information or to request a baiting service please contact Customer Service on (07) 4783 9800 to place a customer request for assistance in 1080 baiting.

 

Guardian animals

Livestock guardian dogs are increasingly being used to protect livestock from wild dogs and foxes; particularly to protect valuable goats on small-scale enterprises, though they are now being used on large sheep-grazing properties in western Queensland.

 

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