The McGowan Government will invest $500,000 in five research projects that examine new and effective ways to reduce wild dog impacts on farming and pastoral businesses in Western Australia.
The five projects will be led by researchers at Western Australian universities and by Recognised Biosecurity Groups, which drive regional pest management programs.
Wild dogs are a major pest species impacting on grazing industries across large parts of regional Western Australia.
Areas of focus of the new research include improving the effectiveness of baits, remote monitoring of wild dog traps, use of visual and electronic deterrents on fencing and trialing drones to track wild dogs.
The projects are funded through the McGowan Government’s WA Wild Dog Action Plan R&D fund, and have support through Commonwealth Agricultural Competitiveness White Paper funding.
As stated by Agriculture and Food Minister Alannah MacTiernan:
“We need innovative approaches and must harness new technologies to improve management of wild dogs and best support our vital livestock industry.
“These exploratory research projects will look at alternate approaches or improved techniques for wild dog management and control.
“The McGowan Government’s support for this work is part of a broader strategic approach and investment under the WA Wild Dog Action Plan to tackle this pest.”
Minister’s office – 6552 6200
- Identifying baits that are more attractive to wild dogs (Murdoch University) – $150,000 – Baiting is a key tool in control of wild dogs. Identifying the factors that influence bait take and improving bait uptake are vital steps towards improving wild dog control;
- Identifying alternate storage methods for baits (Murdoch University) – $50,000 – Quantifying variability in field manufacturing and storage of baits, and determining best practice for bait storage will increase effectiveness of wild dog baiting approaches;
- Improving the animal welfare outcomes of wild dog management (Goldfields Nullarbor Rangelands Biosecurity Association) – $60,000 – Remote wild dog trap alert systems offer significant improvements to the efficiency and welfare outcomes of trapping as a wild dog control tool;
- Locating and tracking wild dogs using a remote piloted aircraft (Meekatharra Rangelands Biosecurity Association) – $140,000 – The use of Remotely Piloted Aircraft with thermal and high definition cameras has the potential to assist landholders in locating, identifying and responding to wild dogs; and
- Visual and electronic deterrents – (Curtin University) – $100,000 – Fladry, a visual deterrent of fence-mounted flagging, coupled with electric fencing, could provide a temporary, non-lethal wild dog control tool.