Invasive Animals CRC > Blog > Feral Flyer > Feral Flyer issue 210 – 5 April 2012

Welcome to issue 210 of Feral Flyer.

In this edition:

PestSmart YouTube Channel now online!

If you haven’t checked out the PestSmart YouTube channel ( yet make sure you do! All the clips from our hugely popular Wild dog trapping and Best Practice management DVDs are there. New this week are three videos on the problem of feral pigs in Australia and their impacts in marsh and rangeland country, particularly the Macquarie Marshes region of central NSW.

First issue of NRM Notes for 2012 now available

‘NRM Notes’ is a newsletter dedicated to regional groups who work cooperatively to reduce the impacts of pest animals in their area. It’s full of good news and case studies that describe how groups are approaching pest management in their area.

This edition showcases the PestSmart Roadshows, feral pig control in Queensland, Hawkesbury-Nepean CMA pest projects for 2012, and cooperative feral pig management in the Staaten River catchment.
Past editions of NRM Notes can be downloaded from:

Final islandNet newsletter online

The final islandNet newsletter is now available to read online at Featured in this issue:

  • Sea-level rises and beach nesting birds in Tasmania
  • Christmas Island rehabilitation program
  • Macquarie Island Pest Eradication Program update
  • Rapid response to rat incursion on Mana Island, NZ

This project has now been completed, however resources remain online at

Tilapia in Australia – State of Knowledge Forum

The Invasive Animals Cooperative Research Centre and the Murray-Darling Basin Authority are pleased to announce a Forum on Tilapia in Australia to be held in Brisbane, Queensland, 15-16 May 2012.

Attendance at this workshop will be limited to 100 persons. Registrations can be made online:

The forum will focus on the present state of knowledge on Tilapia mariae (spotted tilapia or black mangrove cichlid) and Oreochromis mossambicus (Mozambique tilapia) in Australia and how this can be used to help manage the two species. Fisheries managers in particular are encouraged to attend.

PestSmart Roadshow Dates

RoadShow Dates



Tuesday 17thBairnsdale, VicBairnsdale RSL


Tuesday 1stTownsville, QldTownsville RSL


Tuesday 5thCharleville, QldCharleville Memorial RSL Club
Thursday 7thBourkeDigger on the Darling (old Oxley RSL)
Remember to register

Register for any of these events by logging onto:

New RIRDC pest and weeds risk assessment introduced

The Rural Industries Research and Development Corporation has launched a new assessment framework that will play an important role in helping prevent the introduction and spread of new pests and weeds in Australia.

The assessment process will be used in all of RIRDC’s research projects that include prospective production plants and animals. The RIRDC publication ‘An invasive risk assessment framework for new animal and plant-based production industries’ can be downloaded from
RIRDC’s Managing Director, Craig Burns said the new RIRDC assessment protocols further support the national fight against pests and weeds and help to underpin the Australian Pest Animal Strategy and the Australian Weeds Strategy.

The new assessment process utilises the very latest science and information, including the costs of invasive animals to agriculture from the Invasive Animals CRC. The survey gratefully acknowledged advice and information provided by David Dall, John Thorp, Mary Bomford, Kim James and Daniel Keogh.
The study that led to the development of the new assessment process undertook a world-wide desktop survey to verify the relevance of existing protocols and the assessments made using them. In the case of potential pest animals, the study assembled and collated relevant information into an accessible database.

To contact the study’s researcher, email Dr Robert C Keogh at, phone (08) 9386 4410 or RIRDC at and (02) 6271 4100.

New wild dog PestSmart fact sheet

With a focus on laws and regulations in Australia relating to wild dogs, a new PestSmart fact sheet from the Invasive Animals CRC explains wild dog management legislation and policy often vary between jurisdictions at local and state levels, with overriding federal laws also affecting wild dog management.

The fact sheet details the following types of regulations that should be considered before beginning any wild dog management activity:

Legal obligations on owners of land where wild dogs occur
The responsibility to manage wild dogs rests largely with the owners or managers of the land where wild dogs occur. In places where wild dogs are considered pests, landowners have a responsibility to control wild dogs on their land and prevent them from causing problems on neighbouring lands.
Laws relating to animal welfare
People managing wild dogs are obligated to use control methods that minimise any potential pain, fear or distress. Codes of practice, standard operating procedures and best-practice guidelines for the management of wild dogs have been developed, are publically available and should be followed in order to prevent cruelty to animals during control operations.
Laws relating to land tenure
In many cases, wild dogs are a ‘protected species’ in national parks and conservation reserves while they are considered ‘declared pests’ in many livestock production areas.
Laws relating to the conservation status of specific wild dog populations
Controlling all wild dogs may be allowed along the boundaries of some conservation reserves, while core areas within a reserve may be set aside for wild dog conservation. An isolated island population (such as dingoes on Fraser Island) might be considered a unique natural asset worthy of conservation. Alternatively, people might want to only conserve pure dingoes but eliminate impure hybrids and feral dogs.
Laws relating to the use of specific control techniques
There is specific legislation dealing with the use of firearms, which are often used to euthanise wild dogs in trapping or shooting programs. Various laws also govern the use of poisons and other veterinary drugs used to kill or safely handle wild dogs. Many of these chemicals have label instructions and directions for use that are legally binding.
Laws relating to the use of animals for research and teaching
Some wild dog management activities might be considered ‘research and teaching activities’ in some jurisdictions, such as the systematic use of infra-red trail cameras or attaching tracking collars to wild dogs. If this is the case, various additional permits and approvals may be required before management activities can begin.
Laws relating to the keeping, sale, and movement of wild dogs
Different states and territories may or may not allow the keeping of wild dogs as pets. A permit may be required to do so. Wild dogs may be seized and euthanised if they are being kept illegally.
Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999
All new wild dog control programs must be reviewed under the EPBC Act before they are put in place, to assess the program’s risk to threatened species in the area.

Wild dogs are identified by the national Vertebrate Pests Committee as a ‘Category 5 / Extreme’ species. Category 5 means that the animal is a recognised pest that is both widespread and established, while an Extreme classification indicates that such animals should not be allowed to enter, nor be kept in any state or territory without permission. Wild dogs are also identified as a pest animal under the Australian Pest Animal Strategy.

Greater level of detail can also be found in state and local wild dog management plans, which can be accessed at The fact sheet can be downloaded from

ECOS e-magazine: Carp herpesvirus could stem the tide

Credit: G. Heath/scienceimage

Special feature commissioned by the Invasive Animals CRC

While two years of flooding rains have brought our river systems back to life, populations of carp – previously held in check by the drought – have exploded.

This will likely have dire consequences for our waterways and native wildlife. A recently identified biological control agent Koi herpesvirus (KHV) may one day keep carp numbers in check.

Recreational fishers welcome the prospect.

“We are cautiously optimistic about KHV and would certainly like to think that this is a solution to the problem of exploding carp numbers in the Murray-Darling Basin area”, says Christopher Collins, Executive Office of the Victorian Recreational Fishing Peak Body.

Victorian trout angler, Mr Hall, would like to see the tests and approvals expedited so that the virus could be released earlier. He has been seeing carp moving steadily upriver towards Lake Eildon.
‘We need to act quickly, or we will have another environmental disaster on our hands,’ he warns.


Banks, Peter B., and Hughes, Nelika K. (2012) A review of the evidence for potential impacts of black rats (Rattus rattus) on wildlife and humans in Australia. Wildlife Research 39, 78–88.

Susan A. Mainka and Geoffrey W. Howard (2010) Climate change and invasive species: double jeopardy. INTEGRATIVE ZOOLOGY Volume 5, Issue 2, June 2010, Pages: 102–111,

Burgiel, S.W. and A.A. Muir. (2010). Invasive Species, Climate Change and Ecosystem- Based Adaptation: Addressing Multiple Drivers of Global Change. Global Invasive Species Programme (GISP), Washington, DC, US, and Nairobi, Kenya.

PestSmart Publications

The Invasive Animals Cooperative Research Centre Community Awareness Survey (CAS) has pioneered a new technique in opinion research called ‘Reading the Public Mind’ (RtPM).

PestSmart Factsheet: Have you got wild dogs? Fact sheet on detecting the presence of wild dogs.

PestSmart Factsheet: Wild dog policy and legislation considerations. Fact sheet on laws and regulations in Australia relating wild dogs.

PestSmart Factsheet: Tools and strategies for wild dog management. Fact sheet on methods and strategies for wild dog control.

Paroo Model of Wild Dog Control. Describes the successful wild dog management program developed and implemented in the Paroo Shire in Queensland.


Where has the money gone? A decision by authorities to cease aerial dog baiting has left local landholders annoyed and fearing the worst…The Scone Advocate

Why the invaders are winning: Australia’s vital scientific warfare against alien vegetation is being hamstrung by government inaction, and it’s our grandchildren who will pay the price…Canberra Times

Selection begins for new rabbit control agent: NSW scientists have been screening more than 100 overseas strains of the rabbit calicivirus also known as Rabbit Haemorrhagic Disease Virus (RHDV) – in a bid to come up with a new, more effective rabbit biological control for Australian conditions…NSW DPI

Dogged approach required: Our neighbour lost 14 sheep in that time – he has the luxury of being able to bring his flock in close to his house. I don’t…Weekly Times Now

Rural and Resources Report for North West and Western Queensland, Monday 2nd April 2012: Wild dogs forcing sheep producers to quit, Council unsure whether Cloncurry solar project will go ahead, Increase in national livestock yardings…ABC Rural

Wild dogs still a real threat: THE Hume Livestock Health and Pest Authority is urging landholders to be vigilant with reports on wild dog sightings to assist in curbing their impact…The Border Mai

Pet dogs attacking livestock in Delegate: FOLLOWING reports of dogs roaming on rural properties within the South East Livestock Health and Pest Authority, domestic dog owners are being reminded to supervise their dogs at all times to avoid unintentional attacks on livestock…Bombala Time

New control option on way: THE development of new toxins and toxin-delivery devices plus the increasing use of livestock guardian dogs for flock protection, are part of the fight against wild dogs…Stock Journal

Landholders urged: ‘unite to tackle pigs’: LANDHOLDERS need to work together to help tackle feral pig problems, Queensland Parks and Wildlife Service (QPWS) says…North Queensland Register

Upcoming Conferences


  • Tilapia in Australia – State of Knowledge Forum. Brisbane, Queensland, 15-16 May 2012.
  • Collaborate | Innovate | 2012 National Wine Centre in Adelaide from 15-17 May 2012.
  • Wildlife Tourism Australia’s 3rd National Workshop: ‘USING WILDLIFE FOR TOURISM’ Currumbin Wildlife Sanctuary, Gold Coast Qld Wednesday – Friday 16-18th May 2012
  • 4th International Wildlife Management Congress. Durban, South Africa. 9-12 July 2012
  • Queensland Pest Animal Symposium. Caloundra. 30 July – 2 August 2012
  • Recreational Fishing Conference. Gold Coast. 17-19 August 2012
  • 3rd European Congress of Conservation Biology. Glasgow, Scotland. 28 August-1 September 2012
  • Fertility Control Conference. Jackson Wyoming, USA. 29 August-1 September 2012

For more information on these and other events, please see details on our website.