Eastern Eyre landholders urged to bait feral rabbits now

News article |

The Eyre Peninsula Landscape Board is urging landholders in the eastern areas of the Eyre Peninsula to bait feral rabbits now, with reports of numbers rising around Cleve, Kimba and Cowell.

20 September 2021

The Eyre Peninsula Landscape Board’s Cleve-based Landscape Officer, Liam Anderson, says it’s imperative that landholders get on top of this rise in rabbits numbers now.

"Rabbits breed up quickly and will feed on crops and pastures," Mr Anderson says.

“The grazing impact of twelve rabbits is equivalent to one dry sheep.

"Baiting can cut numbers by 98 per cent. Rabbits consume of lot of plant seeds in their diet, making oats an ideal bait."

Landscape Officers in the Eyre Peninsula Landscape Board’s eastern offices can help landholders set up their baiting program with 12 kilogram buckets of pre-mixed 1080 oats available for $25.

Bait laying trailers can also be loaned free of charge from the Cleve office. Mr Anderson says an effective baiting program takes commitment with land managers needing to ‘train’ rabbits to eat oats by supplying three ‘free’ feeds of clean oats before laying bait out.

“We recommend that a minimum of three free feeds of untreated bait lines are laid at least three days apart, then follow-up with a trail of 1080 oats,” Mr Anderson says.

“If you do not supply free feeds, then you run the risk of a poor uptake of bait and having bait shy rabbits on your property.

“Fast action and a small investment of time now will save you a great deal of time and money in the future.

“Rabbit control is an integral part of farm planning, with baiting being only one part of a control program.”

If 1080 baiting is not an avenue of interest, the Eyre Peninsula Landscape Board can help facilitate a release of the RHDV1 K5 (Khaleesi) virus. For more details on this, please get in contact with us.

A full range of other control techniques and best practises can be found on the FeralScan website. Rabbit sightings can also be reported on FeralScan.

Contact Liam Anderson on 0428 282 077 to pre-order 12kg buckets of pre-mixed 1080 oats for $25, or to borrow a bait laying trailer from the Cleve office.

Landholders in other areas of the Eyre Peninsula are also encouraged to contact their local landscape board office for baiting options if rabbit sightings are increasing.

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