Baiting for biodiversity on Yorke Peninsula
Hooded plovers, malleefowl, goannas and lambs will all be beneficiaries of three landscape-scale baiting programs for both foxes and rabbits being coordinated across Yorke Peninsula, if past results are any indication.
Yorke Peninsula landholders and community groups will have access to free rabbit bait and discounted fox bait in January and February as part of a coordinated baiting program being led by Natural Resources Northern and Yorke (NRNY).
"It’s now time to get involved", said NRNY Sustainable Landscapes Ranger, Jasmine Swales. "This is the perfect time to target these pest species as the young are dispersing, alternative food sources are scarce, and they are more likely to take a bait."
Ms Swales said that baiting is most effective when undertaken at a broad scale across a number of properties, as it means fewer baits are needed over a shorter time to remove more pest species. It also means that reinvasion from surrounding properties is reduced.
"Coordinated fox baiting has been running on Yorke Peninsula since 2007 and has been really effective", said Ms Swales. "The best evidence we have comes from our regular counts of threatened species on YP, like hooded plovers, malleefowl and goannas."
"Farmers also report increases in lambing percentages following fox baiting activity."
"As part of this initiative, fox bait will be available to landholders at a discounted rate from 12 distribution points from January 27-29," said Ms Swales. "Rabbit bait will be supplied free to landholders and community groups in January and February."
Over 6000 fox baits and 180kg of rabbit bait is laid annually by landholders, maximising the benefits of this coordinated program.
NRNY Sustainable Landscapes Rangers Van Teubner and Jasmine Swales also work with landholders to deliver an intensive fox control program across 60,000 hectares on the tip of Southern Yorke Peninsula, in what has been identified as a ‘key biodiversity area’.
This program sees 2800 baits laid at 690 permanent bait sites during a ten week period coinciding with lambing and fox movement.
"This is where we reintroduced the Tammar Wallaby in 2004," Ms Swales said. "Broad scale fox control has been a critical factor in the success of this program."
The baiting programs are funded by the Australian Government through Natural Resources Northern and Yorke.
Landholders can register and pre-order both rabbit and fox baits by contacting NRM Northern and Yorke on 8841 3444 or emailing DEWNR.NRNY@sa.gov.au