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Landholders urged: 'unite to tackle pigs'

27 Mar, 2012 03:00 AM
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LANDHOLDERS need to work together to help tackle feral pig problems, Queensland Parks and Wildlife Service (QPWS) says.

A succession of above average wet seasons has triggered higher numbers of the pest across the state.

New control programs have been set up in Bowling Green Bay National Park south of Townsville and Staaten River National Park between Port Douglas and the Gulf.

NQ Dry Tropics has also funded a position within Burdekin Shire Council to coordinate pig- control efforts.

QPWS said it was also maintaining effective long-term programs such as those in Rinyirru (Lakefield) National Park (Cape York Peninsula Aboriginal Land).

Complete statewide control efforts to target feral animals and weeds in national parks and forests total $4.5 million.

"Feral pigs and other pests cause serious damage to Queensland's fragile habitats, and it is critical that these threats are managed and, where practical, eradicated," QPWS Cape York/Savanna regional manager James Newman said.

The service said it worked closely with neighbouring property owners and other members of the rural community, as well as local governments, natural resource management regional bodies and other state agencies.

Mr Newman said the service took its job seriously, but relied on a joint effort to help eradicate pests.

"QPWS takes its responsibilities in this regard very seriously," he said.

"All landholders need to work together to meet this challenge in order to minimise impacts on economic, natural and cultural values."

But a Townsville ex-professional pig hunter last year said not enough control measures were in place to clear the pest, and suggested an incentive be brought back to help put a dent in rising pig populations.

Neil Sim said problems were compounded by the market lost when the bottom fell out of the pig meat trade.

He explained chiller boxes had closed down years ago after demand from overseas pork markets dried up.

Tight restrictions on professional pig hunters were also stunting progress, he said at the time.

He said a lot of professional hunters had pulled out of the game, resulting in more unprofessional, reckless hunters.

"There was trouble with people going into the national park all the time and illegally wrecking our gear and stealing traps, or sneaking in with dogs and poaching," he said.

Authorities said at the time there were no plans to reinstate the chiller box in Townsville.

Feral pigs can weigh up to 175kg and can breed rapidly in the wet season, which generates ideal living conditions, with wider food sources and swampy areas.

They dig up and wallow in watercourses and farming land, damaging native vegetation, natural animal nesting sites and feed, food crops and fences.

Feral pigs are also known to carry Murray Valley encephalitis and Ross River fever.

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READER COMMENTS

john
20/12/2013 11:59:10 AM, on North Queensland Register

I am an older experienced shooter and would like to help with this problem , my phone no is o488120592 , regards john

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Good and after all the highly regulated labor supply chain and middlemen costs and other fees
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Can i get a Chinese shearing team working for their money ?So if O.S protection is a subsidy to
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You get the feeling that a whole lot of foreign investors in that part of the world, the great