Stock Handling & Animal Welfare

Western Australian wild dog control gets $19.94m boost

Sheep Central November 15, 2016

wild-dog-queensland-2016WILD dog control in Western Australia has been boosted with $19.94 million in funding from the Liberal National Government.

WA Agriculture and Food Minister Mark Lewis announced the funding yesterday, with the release of the Western Australian Wild Dog Action Plan 2016-2021.

The funding will aid implementation of key recommendations of the plan, including formation of a WA Wild Dog Alliance and biosecurity groups to coordinate wild dog management, repair and replace 405 kilometres of the existing State Barrier Fence, and $1.5 million for competitive grants for cell or cluster fencing.

Mr Lewis said the comprehensive industry-led plan aimed to reduce the economic and social impact of wild dogs.

“Wild dog predation on livestock is taking a heavy economic and emotional toll on livestock producers in affected pastoral and agricultural areas,” he said.

“The action plan recognises the importance of bringing together industry, government and the community to co-ordinate efforts to control wild dogs, and to protect and revitalise our pastoral, agricultural and regional tourism industries.

“A key step is the formation of the WA Wild Dog Alliance to provide industry-based leadership to implement the plan,” he said.

“This includes boosting support for existing biosecurity groups which have formed to control wild dogs and other pests.

“There is also ongoing funding for professional doggers.”

The plan also includes funding to identify gaps in research and development, including surveillance technology.

Regional Development Minister Terry Redman welcomed the plan, which identified further upgrades and extensions to the State Barrier Fence in the southern agricultural area, as central to effective control.

“The fence has undergone significant improvements in recent years to become a more effective barrier to wild dogs, including the closure of the 170 kilometre ‘Yilgarn Gap’ with the benefit of Royalties for Regions funding,” Mr Redman said.

WAFarmers welcomes announcement

WAFarmers Livestock Council president John Wallace said the approval of the plan and additional funding for cell or cluster fencing was the culmination of extensive work by industry.

He said the state spends about 8.8 million per year on wild dog management and the annual cost of maintaining the 1170-kilometre State Barrier Fence is about $200,000.

“By complementing these maintenance activities with the injection of funds from the State Government, we can be confident that we can reduce the impact of wild dogs on agricultural production and biodiversity,” Mr Wallace said.

“While there is a need to prevent wild dogs getting within the fence, we acknowledge the need for a collaborative approach from industries, government and the communities inside the fence to contribute to the prevention of wild dog incursion, so we look forward to working with other stakeholders to put this plan into action.”

The WA Wild Dog Action Plan 2016-2021 was developed by the Wild Dog Action Group in consultation with WAFarmers and the Pastoralists and Graziers Association, and was chaired by pastoralist Justin Steadman.

The plan was funded through the Department of Agriculture and Food WA’s Boosting Biosecurity Defences project, with Royalties for Regions investment. Stock losses from wild dogs in WA are estimated at up to $25 million a year.

Click here to read the full Western Australian Wild Dog Action Plan 2016-2021.

Sources: DAFWA, WAFarmers.


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  1. Cath Marett, December 30, 2016

    We are station owners at Cue and wish to be very proactive in controlling and eliminating wild dogs. Can you please advise about the application process for these government grants? Thanking you in anticipation. Cath. Editor: Cath, I suggest you contact the WA Agriculture and Food Minister’s office – (08) 6552 6400 or the
    WA Regional Development Minister’s office – (08) 6552 6700.

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