The Queensland Feral Pest Initiative is to support weed and pest animal management projects.
The Queensland Feral Pest Initiative has received funding through the Queensland Government to support the growth of a productive and prosperous food and fibre sector in Queensland, Queensland Government’s Rural Assistance Package and the Australian Government Agricultural Competitiveness White Paper, the Australian Government's plan for stronger farmers and a stronger economy.
This funding is for organisations such as regional natural resource management (NRM) groups, incorporated industry organisations, local governments or a regional organisation of local governments or equivalent body. These organisations are requested to develop regional projects through consultation; with affected stakeholders that can include primary producers, local governments, regional NRM groups, Landcare and wild dog committees that identify agreed project proponent or proponents.
The Queensland Feral Pest Initiative Oversight Group (Oversight Group) includes Wild Dog Fencing Commissioner Vaughan Johnson, Wild Dog Fencing Commissioner Mark O’Brien, representatives of AgForce, Queensland Farmers Federation, Local Government Association of Queensland, Queensland Regional Groups Collective, Queensland Conservation Council, Wildlife Preservation Society of Queensland, Invasive Animals Cooperative Research Centre and the Departments of Agriculture and Fisheries (DAF), National Parks, Sport and Racing (DNPSR), Natural Resources and Mines (DNRM) and Environment and Heritage Protection (DEHP). This Oversight Group of government and non-government representatives is overseeing the development and implementation of the initiative.
Queensland Government Wild Dog and Feral Cat Destruction Initiative
The Queensland Government previously committed $5 million over three years to support new initiatives aimed at destroying wild dog and cat populations.
DAF allocated $4 million to support wild dog projects in drought-affected areas and $1 million for feral cat research that will support future programs in national parks and key private conservation reserves that are heavily impacted by feral cat predation.
Australian Government Weed and Feral Animal Drought Assistance Program
The Australian Government has announced $25.8 million of funding assistance for drought-affected producers across Australia to manage priority weed and pest animals.
The Honourable Barnaby Joyce MP, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Agriculture and Water Resources has announced that Queensland will receive up to $10 million in the 2015-16 financial year for pest animal and weed projects.
The majority of this funding will support regionally agreed cluster fencing and management actions that add to the work producers are already doing to build exclusion fencing and manage pest animals.
Some of the funding will be made available to also support other pest animal and weed management in drought-affected areas.
The successful projects from Round 1 included:
- Southern Downs Regional Council, to increase community support and participation in wild dog management in the Southern Downs and Goondiwindi Regional Council areas, including aerial baiting in inaccessible areas.
- South West NRM Ltd, to assist landholders construct cluster fencing for wild dog management, including parts of Balonne Shire Council, and facilitate monitoring to measure the impacts of wild dogs.
- Goondiwindi Regional Council, to assist landholders construct cluster fencing for wild dog and feral pig management.
- Department of Agriculture and Fisheries, to improve feral cat management in eastern Australia in partnership with universities, state government and not for profit land management agencies and other pest management research agencies.
- Maranoa Regional Council, to assist landholders construct cluster fencing for wild dog management.
- Quilpie Shire Council, to boost wild dog control in the area with additional wild dog trappers over a three year period.
- Central Western Queensland Remote Area Planning and Development Board, to assist landholders construct cluster fencing for wild dog management.
- Desert Channels Queensland, to tackle prickly acacia through supporting key drought affected properties in the Desert Channels, Flinders and McKinlay areas with weed treatment and strategies that help stop weed spread.
On 1 May 2016, the Honourable Annastacia Palaszczuk MP, Premier, announced that the Queensland Government will provide additional $5 million for wild dog fencing, which will help to stem the decline in sheep numbers in western Queensland.
$5 million has been allocated for grants to support regionally agreed cluster fencing arrangements in areas with high wild dog density and/or evidence of high impacts.
Regional Weed and Pest Animal Management Projects
This investment priority combines Queensland and Federal Government funding and is allocated to support the community improve pest and weed management.
Queensland Government funding
The Queensland Government has allocated $1.84 million over 3 years for projects in rural areas of Queensland where pest animal and weed impacts are having or have the potential to have a significant economic and environmental impact.
Federal Government funding
Queensland has received $2 million for farmers in drought-affected regions to control established pest animals and weeds, as part of the Australian Government’s Agricultural Competitiveness White Paper.
Regional weed and pest animal management projects are focusing on:
- complementing regionally agreed cluster fencing arrangements in areas with high wild dog density and/or evidence of high impacts
- targeted weed or pest animal control to protect assets in areas where it is impractical to locally eradicate a particular pest animal or weed
- locally eradicate emerging populations of weeds and pest animals.
Supporting industry and local government manage weeds and pest animals
Queensland Government funding totalling $1.9 million over 3 years has been made available to local governments in regional areas to employ staff to support and mentor landholders to increase and/or improve their pest management activities.
Projects are focusing on:
- continuing to build long term capacity in community pest and weed management
- skills development in pest animal and weed management
- activities ensuring stakeholders are aware of their responsibilities and obligations under Queensland Legislation
- supporting community groups.
The successful Round 2 projects include:
- RAPAD—Central Western Queensland and Flinders region cluster fencing
- South West NRM—Collaborative Area Management Phase 3 cluster fencing
- Cape York NRM Ltd—priority feral pest and weed management
- Cassowary Coast Regional Council—Kosters Curse weed management
- Balonne Shire Council—monitoring, baiting and trapping program
- Southern Downs Regional Council—cross border wild dog control
- Desert Channels Queensland—prickly acacia eradication
- Hinchinbrook Shire Council—feral pig management
- Southern Gulf NRM—prickly acacia management
- Queensland Murray-Darling Committee—rabbit control
- Queensland Murray-Darling Committee—deer control
- McKinlay Shire Council—mesquite eradication
- Longreach Regional Council—snake cactus control
- Townsville City Council—yellow crazy ant program
- Western Downs Regional Council—coordinated pest programs
- Maranoa Regional Council—cluster fencing
- Goondiwindi Regional Council—cluster fencing
- Fitzroy Basin Association—wild dogs, feral cats and pigs control
- RAPAD—three wild dog coordinators for three years to cover western Queensland to assist landholders
- Barcoo Shire Council—Additional officer over three years to build capacity of Barcoo Shire landowners to meeting biosecurity obligation
- Winton Shire Council—Additional officer over three years to build capacity of Winton Shire Council landowners to improve biosecurity obligations
- Maranoa Regional Council—Additional officer over three years to build landholder capacity in Maranoa and neighbouring shires
- Barcaldine Regional Council—Additional officer over three years to progress the Barcaldine Regional Council Good Neighbour Program
- Southern Downs Regional Council - Additional officer to deliver a compliance and property level pest management planning function
- Bulloo Shire Council - Employment of a part-time Biosecurity liaison officer to build capacity amongst local landholders.
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