26 May, 2021

Time is now critical to report feral animals

THE NUMBER of feral animals spotted in an area from Esk to Woodford is a cause for concern not only for landholders but for motorists driving after dark.

Landmark Senate report calls for action on feral deer and pigs (See separate story)
Landmark Senate report calls for action on feral deer and pigs (See separate story)

A post on facebook last Monday declared: “Five deer on the road Kilcoy side of Walshs Crossing.”

A motorist driving out of Kilcoy after dark this week encountered an adult doe between Kilcoy township and Winya.

Only last week-end a wild pig estimated to be over 100kg was shot on a property off Mary Smokes Creek Road (see cover picture).

Moreton Bay Mayor Peter Flannery expressed the Council’s concerns as to the problem. He said the Moreton Bay Regional Council boasted some of the most sophisticated feral animal control strategies in south-east Queensland.

“MBRC has an extensive, scientifically-based program under the Biosecurity Act 2014 to assist landowners in meeting their biosecurity obligations and ensure that Council is managing its lands effectively,” he said.

“Council’s pest management team works with residents to implement effective controls, and we have an array of tools available depending on the constraints or conditions of that land and surrounding environment.

“This includes using new technology for trapping feral pigs, including remote control gate controllers and motion sensing wildlife cameras which send real time images via SMS.”

Cr Flannery said that the team had also trialled and implemented new Australian technology called ‘Hoggone’, designed specifically to control feral pigs.

This uses sodium nitrite, a food preservative that impacts pigs at very low doses, in a feeder that is only accessible to feral pigs. “Feral pigs can be active at any time of year,” Cr Flannery said, “but are normally more active in our area at this time. “They will be impacted by available food sources and will move accordingly.”

Cr Flannery said that although MBRC had not received any calls or complaints from the Woodford area recently, locals were advised to contact Council immediately if they saw any signs of feral pigs so that action could be taken immediately.

"It is important that residents are aware of their safety at all times as these can be large, unpredictable animals,” Cr Flannery said.

"There are also a number of actions that residents can do themselves to reduce the risk of feral pigs entering their property, including removing fallen fruit from fruit trees, rather than leaving on the ground, location and security around mulch/compost piles and assessing their property for other food sources.”

Mayor Flannery said that reports of wild dogs and feral rabbits in the Woodford area were also being received.

“Now is a critical time for residents to report to Council’s pest management team sightings of feral rabbits so that we can plan and implement biological controls program,” Cr Flannery said.

“For the program to be a success, it is essential that the control team be aware of all the locations, including those with only small numbers of rabbits, because we all know they breed prolifically, which means we need to act quickly to contain the potential problem.”


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