The Australian Government is providing $880,000 to Victoria for two projects to improve the management of pest animals and weeds in Victoria, through a Federation Funding Agreement with states and territories as part of the $30.3 million Established Pest Animals and Weeds Management Pipeline Program.
Minister for Agriculture and Northern Australia, David Littleproud said that the funding would be used to better manage feral pigs, and to support the management of rabbits and established weeds on culturally sensitive indigenous landscapes.
“The feral pig project will see a state-wide feral pig coordinator employed who will be responsible for facilitating the development of a Victorian feral pig distribution database and best practice management training for land managers in areas most affected or threatened by feral pigs, Minister Littleproud said.
“The Victorian feral pig coordinator will also oversee the establishment of up to five cross-tenure community feral pig management programs, to empower community-led action against these destructive pests.
“The second project will support the appointment of an Indigenous Facilitator to work with Traditional Owner groups to co-design a guide for managing established invasive species in culturally-sensitive areas.
“The guide will include a decision-making matrix with a methodology agreed by Traditional Owners that can be used by private and public land managers to ensure rabbits and weeds are being managed on a landscape-scale, without damaging important indigenous sites.”
Victorian Minister for Agriculture, Mary-Anne Thomas said the Victorian Government is providing more than $500,000 in co-contributions to the two projects.
“This funding will help our farmers safeguard against established pest animals and weeds which not only reduce agricultural productivity, but cause damage to the environment and impact sites of significance to traditional owners,” Minister Thomas said.
“Feral pigs are a pest that are increasingly affecting Victorian farmers, industry and communities. The feral pig coordinator will reduce the impact of feral pigs at a landscape-scale.”
“We understand rabbit and weed control programs can be challenging to roll out in culturally-significant areas which can deter land managers from participating in landscape-scale control programs. The
Indigenous Facilitator is an important role that will assist Victorians to navigate solutions to better manage these pests, whilst also preserving these important areas.”
“Australia has some of the most resilient farmers in the world and they do a great job at managing the impact of pest animals and weeds on their land, Minister Littleproud said.
“However, we recognise that there is a need to improve the skills and capacity of farmers and land managers, and the tools available to them, to better manage pest animals and weeds.”
Minister Littleproud acknowledged the significant contribution from the Victorian government towards the projects.
“These projects are a great example of how strong collaboration across governments and land managers can improve the management of established pest animals and weeds,” said Minister Littleproud.
“The Australian Government’s $5 million in funding, supported by cash and in-kind contributions from the states and territories, will deliver 11 projects across Australia to improve the management of established pest animals and weeds that have a detrimental effect on Australia’s agricultural competitiveness and the environment.”
The Australian Government’s $30.3 million Established Pest Animals and Weeds Management Pipeline Program aims to deliver a lasting legacy to farmers, land managers and the wider community in the fight against established pest animals and weeds.