A COORDINATED wild dog control program is being run in partnership between Local Land Services, Forestry Corporation and private landholders to address the increasing threat posed by wild dogs following bushfires and drought.
The baiting program is part of a carefully planned wild dog control strategy to help protect both livestock and native wildlife that have survived the past summer of bushfire and drought conditions.
Ground baiting, in conjunction with targeted aerial baiting in hilly and difficult to access terrain, will be coordinated by North Coast Local Land Services starting this month.
According to North Coast Local Land Services team leader, Dean Chamberlain, landholders have reported an increase in pest activity, particularly feral pigs and wild dogs, moving out of land burnt by recent bushfires.
"Bushfires across the region have pushed pest predators out of burnt country and on to local farmland, resulting in more wild dog attacks on livestock and wildlife," Mr Chamberlain said.
"While livestock, particularly calves, are at risk of attack from wild dogs, native animals that have lost their habitat are also vulnerable to hungry feral predators."
Good rainfall in February and March this year has allowed pests such as feral pigs and wild deer to move throughout the landscape and North Coast Local Land Services is currently working with landholders to manage these pests as well.
"The combined impact of drought, heat and fire has made pest control an even more pressing issue than usual, particularly for native species that are struggling to cope," Mr Chamberlain said.
Both private and public land managers are taking part in the coordinated autumn wild dog baiting program which is supported by North Coast Local Land Services, through funding from the Australian Government's Wildlife and Habitat Bushfire Recovery Program.
Forestry Corporation's acting forest protection manager, Peter Walters, said the coordinated program will help support native wildlife during this vulnerable time.
"It's great to be part of this coordinated effort and make a difference for local wildlife and graziers," Mr Walters said.
"Post-bushfires, native animals and stock alike are open to attack from feral predators and are in a vulnerable position.
"It's important to get on top of wild dogs now during this post-bushfire window."
For more information about the autumn baiting program and its role in wildlife recovery and agricultural production, contact North Coast Local Land Services on 1300 795-299.