What are your thoughts on the revised policy on the management of wild dogs in South Australia?

Now Closed

This online engagement was hosted on YourSAy from 10 February to 17 April 2020. Find out more about the consultation process. Below is a record of the engagement.

 

We want to hear your feedback on the revised policy on the management of wild dogs in South Australia.

Read the revised Declared Animal Policy (Wild dogs and dingoes), the proposed changes and the Frequently Asked Questions and provide your feedback by commenting below.

Your feedback will be considered by PIRSA, NRM boards, and the Minister for Environment and Water and will inform the development of the final version of the policy.

Comments closed

Caitlyn Brightmon

15 Mar 2020

Firstly, Dingo is an iconic totem to First Nations all over Australia, featuring in Dreamtime stories of Creation. Eradicating them is destroying another part of their heritage.
We know from research, scientists and environmentalists, as well as indigenous communities that Dingoes are an important apex predator and rather than eradicating them we should be exploring ways to coexist - with the need to protect livestock. There are many non-lethal alternatives to protect livestock that have been proven. It's also a proven fact that 1080 baits don't just affect target animals, many other native species suffer an agonizing death from secondary feeding and taking baits- goannas/quolls/raptors and marsupial rats for example.

Please ensure the dingo has a future as Australia's native animals deserve to be protected. this is the priority. Funds can be implemented to conserve/ reimburse stock losses and other non lethal means. We can co exist.

Government Agency

Wild Dog Planning Officer > Caitlyn Brightmon

16 Mar 2020

Good afternoon

Thank you for your suggestions and comments to assist with wild dog management to sustain the livestock industry in SA. They will be considered during the review of the SA Wild Dog Policy.

The policy acknowledges that dingoes are a native species, having been introduced to Australia about 3500 years ago. Outside the Dog Fence, dingoes are managed as native animals, which perform ecological roles and are valued as an iconic totem by Aboriginal people.

It is widely acknowledged, even by leading academics, that populations of wild dogs (dingoes, hybrids and escaped domestic dogs) cannot coexist in the inside the Dog Fence together with a viable sheep industry.

PIRSA, SA Murray Darling NRM Board and the Eyre Pensinsula NRM Board recently funded several workshops with livestock producers, conservationists and Australia’s leading maremma advocates and researchers. The workshops highlighted that maremmas are being used in some small livestock farms, but all of the presenters highlighted that maremmas are not a viable, nor cost effective solution for wild dog management on vast pastoral stations such as those in South Australia. Most importantly, maremma’s do not help landholders to meet their wild dog control obligations.

Regards
Brad Page
Principal Biosecurity Officer - Pest Animals

Julie Collins

14 Mar 2020

We know from research, scientists and environmentalists, as well as indigenous communities that Dingoes are an important apex predator and rather than eradicating them we should be exploring ways to coexist - with the need to protect livestock. There are many non-lethal alternatives to protect livestock! It's also a proven fact that 1080 baits don't just affect target animals, many other native species suffer an agonizing death from secondary feeding.

Please ensure the dingo has a future as Australia's native animals deserve to be protected. this is the priority!🐾🐾

Government Agency

Wild Dog Planning Officer > Julie Collins

16 Mar 2020

Good afternoon

Thank you for your suggestions and comments to assist with wild dog management to sustain the livestock industry in SA. They will be considered during the review of the SA Wild Dog Policy.

The policy acknowledges that dingoes are a native species, having been introduced to Australia about 3500 years ago. Outside the Dog Fence, dingoes are managed as native animals, which perform ecological roles and are valued as an iconic totem by Aboriginal people.

It is widely acknowledged, even by leading academics, that populations of wild dogs (dingoes, hybrids and escaped domestic dogs) cannot coexist in the inside the Dog Fence together with a viable sheep industry.

PIRSA, SA Murray Darling NRM Board and the Eyre Pensinsula NRM Board recently funded several workshops with livestock producers, conservationists and Australia’s leading maremma advocates and researchers. The workshops highlighted that maremmas are being used in some small livestock farms, but all of the presenters highlighted that maremmas are not a viable, nor cost effective solution for wild dog management on vast pastoral stations such as those in South Australia. Most importantly, maremma’s do not help landholders to meet their wild dog control obligations.

Research indicates that secondary feeding on poisoned wild dogs is a very low risk to Australia's native animals.

Regards
Brad Page
Principal Biosecurity Officer - Pest Animals

DIANA WHIMP

14 Mar 2020

Firstly the animals that are being targeted are not wild dogs they are Dingoes. Dingoes are not an man introduced pest even if they were brought in by Asian seafarers And there is doubt about this.
They have evolved with the rest of the the Australian environment to form a balanced and stable system. If you destroy the Dingoes apart from destroying a unique animal you are destroying the rest of the native fauna and flora.
Along with other predators such as coyotes and wolves people have feared them ,and vilified. In my opinion they are not as bad as they have been made out. I would like to see farmers encouraged to take other measures to protect their stock. Maybe use of guard dogs. I realize its human nature to resist change. But maybe if they could see the benefits, would possibly be cheaper and lead to much less stock loses and protect the Dingo which may be of great benefit to the environment and possibly tourism.

Government Agency

Wild Dog Planning Officer > DIANA WHIMP

16 Mar 2020

Good afternoon

Thank you for your suggestions and comments to assist with wild dog management to sustain the livestock industry in SA. They will be considered during the review of the SA Wild Dog Policy.

The policy acknowledges that dingoes are a native species, having been introduced to Australia about 3500 years ago. Outside the Dog Fence, dingoes are managed as native animals, which perform ecological roles and are valued as an iconic totem by Aboriginal people.

It is widely acknowledged, even by leading academics, that populations of wild dogs (dingoes, hybrids and escaped domestic dogs) cannot coexist in the inside the Dog Fence together with a viable sheep industry.

PIRSA, SA Murray Darling NRM Board and the Eyre Pensinsula NRM Board recently funded several workshops with livestock producers, conservationists and Australia’s leading maremma advocates and researchers. The workshops highlighted that maremmas are being used in some small livestock farms, but all of the presenters highlighted that maremmas are not a viable, nor cost effective solution for wild dog management on vast pastoral stations such as those in South Australia. Most importantly, maremma’s do not help landholders to meet their wild dog control obligations.

Regards
Brad Page
Principal Biosecurity Officer - Pest Animals

DIANA WHIMP > DIANA WHIMP

16 Mar 2020

Maybe the management of livestock on vast stations could be changed so that guard animals are effective. I don't know about the problems on large stations, Are the sheep not flocked?

Government Agency

Wild Dog Planning Officer > DIANA WHIMP

17 Mar 2020

Hi Diana

At the workshops that PIRSA, SA Murray Darling NRM Board and the Eyre Pensinsula NRM Board recently funded, I asked each of the presenters why maremmas, donkeys and other guardian animals were not used more extensively, including by their neighbours. They all offered interesting insights, indicating that guardian animals are not as simple as some people make them seem. For example, some of their maremmas killed all of the lambs when they were born, because the maremmas had been trained on adult sheep, or maremmas strayed onto neighbouring properties and took baits, and some maremmas were less adept at remaining with and protecting the flock.

The rebuild of the South Australian Dog Fence, which is planned to be complete in 2024, will improve the productivity of the sheep industry and reduce its reliance on lethal control techniques.

Regards
Brad Page
Principal Biosecurity Officer - Pest Animals

Louise Watson

14 Mar 2020

Putting Livestock before Wildlife is why we are losing our Wildlife! it has been this way since this country was invaded / colonised ...When will the government get it? Australia is wiping out species faster than anyone in the world. We use 1080; wiping out small critters everywhere and have been using 1080 for 60 years, then have the audacity to blame it on the Kangaroos in ACT for wiping out the smaller critters. Development and Suburbia spread and Farming are the other culprits. And ugly men with guns. Farmers have always HATED any wildlife, they have not learnt how to co exist with this environment. They do not want to learn how to adapt, or to co habitat with the creatures that have been here for thousands if not millions of years, they have always been quick to kill!! How dare they even say that Dingoes don't belong in WA...or SA, or NSW, or QLD, or anywhere. I would rather die than live in a world with no wildlife. We don't need to farm in these revolting old school barbaric ways! Not only that, but now we our living with Climate change, and to think that this industry can be sustained any longer is as insane as Scott Morrison saying he does not have to be tested for the COVID-19 after hanging out with Dutton. The Australian Government is a joke and I have zero respect for this liberal government, they are nasty out of touch old school bogans and they are all connected to farmers. I have zero respect for animal farmers too! ZERO. I have seen the damage they have done, they have wiped out the dingoes all along the East Coast of Australia Evil is how I describe them in fact. And I let everyone from other countries know how backwards we are when ever I get that chance. Thank you

Government Agency

Wild Dog Planning Officer > Louise Watson

16 Mar 2020

Good afternoon

Thank you for your suggestions and comments to assist with wild dog management to sustain the livestock industry in SA. They will be considered during the review of the SA Wild Dog Policy.

The policy acknowledges that dingoes are a native species, having been introduced to Australia about 3500 years ago. Outside the Dog Fence, dingoes are managed as native animals, which perform ecological roles and are valued as an iconic totem by Aboriginal people.

It is widely acknowledged, even by leading academics, that populations of wild dogs (dingoes, hybrids and escaped domestic dogs) cannot coexist in the inside the Dog Fence together with a viable sheep industry.

Regards
Brad Page
Principal Biosecurity Officer - Pest Animals

Sarah McGrady

14 Mar 2020

The fact that this is even being discussed as a possible 'solution' is disgusting! Dingos are a native animal. They should be protected not killed! Predators are an important part of a healthy ecosystem. As a country we have faced enough damage to the ecosystem this year, why destroy more? You should be working on ways to work with them being a part of the ecosystem instead of saying it's to hard let's just wipe them out. Very disapointed in this possibly going ahead. Ashamed to be apart of a state that believes killing them is the answer.

Government Agency

Wild Dog Planning Officer > Sarah McGrady

16 Mar 2020

Good afternoon

Thank you for your suggestions and comments to assist with wild dog management to sustain the livestock industry in SA. They will be considered during the review of the SA Wild Dog Policy.

The policy acknowledges that dingoes are a native species, having been introduced to Australia about 3500 years ago. Outside the Dog Fence, dingoes are managed as native animals, which perform ecological roles and are valued as an iconic totem by Aboriginal people.

It is widely acknowledged, even by leading academics, that populations of wild dogs (dingoes, hybrids and escaped domestic dogs) cannot coexist in the inside the Dog Fence together with a viable sheep industry.

Regards
Brad Page
Principal Biosecurity Officer - Pest Animals

John Read

05 Mar 2020

I'm concerned that the only reason provided for permitting aerial baiting of dingoes north of the Dog Fence is "Outside the Dog Fence dingoes have been effectively maintained as a wildlife species, but their impacts on cattle have been excessive"

Have significant or excessive impacts to cattle (or their calves) in good condition been demonstrated for well managed pastoral stations north of the Dog Fence that outweigh the benefits provided by dingoes to land condition through suppression of competing herbivores?

Together with a team of scientists and outback pastoralists I was involved in a 4 year trial with the specific aim of informing this dingo management policy. On 4 stations we baited some paddocks and left others unbaited and compared calving rates, calf damage, dingo numbers and wildlife responses in the different treatments. Because we all appreciated that dingoes play important roles (for pastoralists and conservation) by reducing kangaroo/emu/goat/pig numbers but also occasionally attacked calves, we set out to determine under what conditions baiting was effective and beneficial for pastoralists. This is important because other studies and many observations have shown that continuous baiting can be counterproductive (dingoes can learn to avoid baits or competing herbivores build up in numbers) and studies in Qld and NT had found that dingo baiting actually increased calf attack compared to unbaited stations.

We didn't identify any years or stations where baiting significantly reduced calf losses (although admittedly the seasons were relatively good during our trial). We concluded that pastoralists can improve calving percentages better by maintaining the condition of their pastures and breeding cows rather than 'scape-goating' dingoes that attacked or scavenged the weak calves of weak cows. We recognised that in some circumstances (dingo prey declining at onset of dry periods) and maybe for particular problem dogs, judicious targeted baiting may be justified north of the fence for critical periods.

Its disappointing that the revised policy does not make mention of this study, does not mention the potentially counterproductive outcomes of broadscale regular baiting, does not acknowledge and promote that management of vegetation and cow condition provides better insurance for calf production than control of scavenger/predators that feed on weak calves, and doesn't propose trigger points when baiting could be considered. Is science and evidence valued?

Government Agency

Wild Dog Planning Officer > John Read

13 Mar 2020

Good afternoon John,

Thank you for your suggestions and comments. They will be considered during the review of the SA Wild Dog Policy.

Not all pastoralists outside the fence regularly bait, with management being both tailored to the needs of individual properties and focused when dingo prey declines at onset of dry periods. Excessive impacts to cattle are what forces some pastoralists outside the fence to invest their time and money into baiting. Such investments are business decisions, which take into account the ecological benefits provided by dingoes.

You indicated that "We concluded that pastoralists can improve calving percentages better by maintaining the condition of their pastures and breeding cows rather than 'scape-goating' dingoes that attacked or scavenged the weak calves of weak cows". This does not appear to be one of the findings of the study, and is not reflective of the investment decisions that pastoralists make before they seek approval from their Landscape Board to undertake baiting.

This policy review is being led by one of the co-authors of the study you referenced on "The effect of wild dog control on cattle production and biodiversity in the SA arid zone". That study has informed the policy review.

Regards
Brad Page
Principal Biosecurity Officer - Pest Animals

katherine moseby

05 Mar 2020

Thank you for the opportunity to comment. I have the following comments
1) I do not agree with the suggested change to force all landholders south of the fence to bait at a specified density and frequency using a specific bait. Landholders south of the fence manage land for a variety of purposes and many of them are not sheep graziers. We do not enforce compulsory cat control for biodiversity conservation nor compulsory fire management. If we would like neighbours to implement wild dog control then this should be encouraged rather than forced and whilst you can recommend control measures, there is not a one size fits all approach to dingo control. In many cases dingoes are bait shy and continuous baiting will not solve the problem. Additionally, many properties have not recorded dingoes for many years and so should not be asked to regularly bait unless dingoes are demonstrated to be an issue in their area. I suggest that this part of the policy is changed to say that if there is evidence that a high number of dingoes are present on a property south of the fence and they are moving onto neighbouring properties then they will be asked to comply with minimum baiting standards. Otherwise landholder should implement monitoring programs to detect dingoes when they appear and this should then trigger effective dingo control (with suggested guidelines for control but with options for different methods depending on the situation- trapping may be better than baiting in some instance). Dingo baiting is labour intensive, results in non target issues for native fauna and completely unnecessary if dingoes are not present in an area or at very low densities. The use of 1080 should be restricted to times when it is really needed not used as a routine control measure when there is no evidence of impact or presence of dingoes.
2. I do not support aerial baiting north of the dingo fence in any capacity. North of the fence dingoes are a legitimate wildlife species and an important cultural animal. There is strong scientific evidence that they control and reduce numbers of kangaroos, wild pigs, goats, wombats and other overabundant or pest species. Widespread baiting of dingoes north of the fence will lead to an expansion of the issues that are currently experienced south of the fence. There is ample evidence of the role dingoes play in suppressing these pest species and when dingoes are removed then these species can build up to very high numbers and cause extreme vegetation damage. There is no information in the revised policy about what triggers would be used for aerial baiting. Would density of dingoes be used as a trigger? How would this be measured? This policy does not provide any safeguards to ensure aerial baiting will only occur when necessary and I struggle to think of any times when widespread baiting north of the fence would be needed except maybe in limited areas after a series of wet years followed by a dry spell. The 2009-2010 wet period was a highly unusual event and is being used to elevate dingo control above required levels. Good cattle management can also reduce dingo damage. The benefits dingoes provide to landholders in terms of keeping kangaroos, pigs, wombats and goats down and increasing pasture production are likely to outweigh the long term impacts to cattle. I am not opposed to infrequent baiting of dingoes where there is a clear need but this should be based on evidence and agreed triggers and should include ground rather than broadscale aerial baiting. Dingoes are an important top order predator that help regulate prey species including feral herbivores.
3. I strongly oppose any baiting in the APY lands. This area is one of the last areas supporting a healthy dingo population and many of our arid zone threatened species are only found in this section of the state. The black flanked rock wallaby is under threat from foxes and cats, and dingoes are being actively left alone in sections of the APY lands for their role in suppressing foxes and cats around these colonies.
4. The 35km buffer zone of control is very wide and seems excessive. Again aerial baiting is an overkill in this area and will just increase the impact of cats and foxes, goats, kangaroos, wombats, pigs etc. Wombats are already an issue in the west in areas south of the dingo fence and goats in the south. Broadscale control of dingoes will exacerbate these issues. Landholders already control dingoes through shooting and ground baiting. Moving to aerial baiting north of the dingo fence is unwarranted and I have seen no evidence to suggest it is necessary. Changes to the dingo policy should be accompanied by hard science and evidence based decision making.

In summary, aerial baiting will lead to increased risk to non target fauna, increased incidence of pest species and has the potential to be mismanaged and overused. There are no agreed triggers or guidelines for its use, there is poor scientific support for this control method or for the impacts of dingoes on the cattle industry in general. I do not think this policy has been well thought out or due consideration given to the implications that widespread baiting will have on other fauna and on the integrity and purity of the wild dingo population. Additionally, enforced control over every property south of the fence is unnecessary, excessive and counterproductive. Where is the evidence that it is needed, what proportion of the properties south of the fence have reported dingo issues in recent times?

Government Agency

Wild Dog Planning Officer > katherine moseby

13 Mar 2020

Good afternoon Katherine,

Thank you for your suggestions and comments. They will be considered during the review of the SA Wild Dog Policy.

1. For over 10 years DEW/NRM have worked to support and coordinate landholders inside the Fence in efforts to reduce the impacts of wild dogs. This has included regular and ongoing conversations with landholders where there are known to be wild dog populations. Unfortunately there are a number of landholders who do not undertake sufficient control, allowing safe havens for wild dogs to build and then disperse into areas of livestock production. Having a baiting standard in legislation will allow the Landscape Boards the opportunity to ensure the baiting standard is followed. Wild dogs, even in low densities, can disperse great distances to find a new home range. Landscape Boards target their enforcement activities using a risk-management approach; they would only enforce the baiting standard to protect the livestock industry.

2. Aerial baiting outside the Fence will allow for landholders to improve the efficiency of their baiting programs in those vast landscapes. Aerial baiting outside the Fence may also be required if the Fence sustains damage, for example, during a high rainfall event where damage occurs and the patrolmen are unable to repair the fence due to inaccessibility by ground.

Landholders who have their own aeroplanes and would like to bait their own properties must still abide by the Civil Aviation Safety Authority regulations for aircraft, as well as the Directions for Use for 1080 which limits where baits can be laid. In addition, the relevant Landscapes SA Boards have their own wild dog management plans, which restrict the amount of baits cattle producers can put out over a 12 month period. The level of baiting available to the landholders on properties outside the Fence was determined by looking at the 1080 baiting data on those properties over a 25 year period prior to 2009. In recent years, very few of the producers outside the Fence have baited anywhere near the maximum they are permitted.

The suppression of prey by wild dogs is heavily contested. There are many papers on the value of wild dogs in the environment, but there are many others that draw opposing conclusions. The distribution and abundance of dingoes have increased across Australia since Europeans introduced additional waters and prey. Returning Australian landscapes to their pre-European condition is not possible, and as a result all of our introduced species, including dingoes, need to be managed.

3. The APY Lands and the AW Landscapes SA Board make the decisions on whether or not wild dog baiting occurs in their district. Baiting is only undertaken to protect cattle properties in APY, and even there very little control is undertaken.

4. The 35km buffer zone was determined in the early 1990’s with the understanding that distance would cover the home range of wild dogs and their dispersal distance. Wombats are an issue on both sides of the Fence on the west coast of SA.

Regards
Brad Page
Principal Biosecurity Officer - Pest Animals

Government Agency

Wild Dog Planning Officer > katherine moseby

03 Apr 2020

Hi Katherine

Just to clarify one of my comments above. I indicated that "...suppression of prey by wild dogs is heavily contested". The word prey in this context refers to "foxes and cats".

It is clear that dingoes suppress populations of animals such as macropods and feral goats.

Regards
Brad Page
Principal Biosecurity Officer - Pest Animals

Bill Nosworthy

03 Mar 2020

Having left a long winded (for me) comment, and now reading others comments, I think this forum may have attracted some rather ill-informed dingo loving folks to get on board! Those with no connection to the land. Those with no thought for the multitudes of native animals eaten by their loving dingos. Without a care for the way they tear a living animal apart, leave it to die in agony, and go to find another to do the same; again, and again, and again. They are a top tier predator, which kills, not for food, but for entertainment, and because they can. There are very few full blood dingos in this country; the true dingo is a hunting beast, the cross breed is an even worse killer. If the Indonesian fishermen hadn't brought the bloody things here, we'd still have Thylacines in this country! That is, if the whitefellas hadn't killed al them, too. Ask the question; why was Tasmania the only place the Thylacine existed when white man arrived? Do some research, you might learn a thing or two. Meanwhile, go back to your latte and tofu, and don't give a care for the "real" world.

Mel Browning > Bill Nosworthy

15 Mar 2020

Bill Nosworthy. Having left a long winded comment and now reading other comments I think this forum may have attracted some rather ill-informed, dingo hating farmers with vested interests in vilifying and killing dingoes to get onboard! Those with zero respect for Australian wildlife. Those with no understand that without an apex predator in the landscape to pick off the old, sick, weak native prey, many more native species will go extinct. Without a care that dingoes are experiencing prolonged, agonising deaths, screaming in pain (liken to human screams), again and again and again from 1080 poison until dingoes are extinct. They are a top tier predator that only needs 500g of meat / day to survive and in the harsh Australian outback don't waste energy except to eat, preferring to conserve their energy sleep alot. There are few full blood feral dogs (less than 1.5%) in this country with hybridisation over exaggerated by those with vested interests. The true dingo is a hunting beast, skilled at a quick kill, with natiral selection quickly dealing with cross breed, that don't have the wild instincts to survive in the wild. If the Indonesian fishermen had brought the 'bloody things' here then why didn't these same fishermen leave pigs, chickens, seeds for crops let alone staying to inhabit Australia? If qhite man wasn't intent on wiping out apex predators, we'd still have Thylacines in Tasmania! No extinctions have ever been attributed to dingoes. Those other species that have gone extinct, the whitefellas have killed all them too. Ask the question: why didn't kangaroos and koalas and dingoes reach Tasmania but the Thylacine did? Who knows? Do some research you might learn a thing or two. Firstly that the latest genetic research proves dingoes have been here at least 8,300 years and arrived via an ancient land bridge. Meanwhile, stay on the farm and know that unless you humanely treat your livestock and make changes to co-exist with Australia's remaining wildlife then your market will be avoiding buying animal products in their millions, with many more enjoying latte and tofu, and continuing to care for the "real" world beyond those with zero respect beyond cashing in on the suffering of both livestock and wildlife.

Bill Nosworthy

03 Mar 2020

I don't think the categorisation OT the dingo as "native" is correct; they, like the cat & fox, are recent imports to this country. They should be considered a feral species when not kept as a domestic pet. The best thing to happen in the last 100 years is the upgrade of the dog fence. It is well due to be done, so accolades to all parties involved. Tolerance of "organic" or "environmental" properties inside the fence avoiding their responsibilities should not be tolerated, if they won't do their job, then we should do it and charge accordingly. The "buffer zone" outside the fence should be excised from "organic" properties, and regular baiting, both ground and aerial, carried out regularly. Also, ALL landholders inside the dog fence should pay a Levy towards it's upkeep into the future, not just those close to the fence. Just because I am 200 km from the fence shouldn't let me off the hook! I reiterate; the dingo is NOT a native animal. The Thylacine was, and science would suggest the dingo caused their extinction on mainland Australia. They are a wolf, and always will be. Thank you for the opportunity to comment.

Government Agency

PIRSA Wild Dog Coordination Team > Bill Nosworthy

04 Mar 2020

Good afternoon Bill
Thank you for your suggestions and comments to assist with wild dog management to sustain the livestock industry in SA. They will be considered during the review of the SA Wild Dog Policy.

Justine PHILIP > Bill Nosworthy

06 Mar 2020

Bill, you are incorrect. Any animal that was present in Australia or an external territory prior to 1400 AD, and occurs naturally in the environment is classified in Australian Law as a native species.
Australian Law Information Institute, 2015

Francesca Fennell

01 Mar 2020

We are pastoral lease holders North of the dog fence in SA.
We have a wild dog problem unless we control through use of 1080.
We regularly see tracks / packs of wild dogs coming in from North and West. Through use of 1080 we are able to minimise impacts on our cattle.
We have trialled not baiting - the effects are devastating. Full grown cattle with bite marks, 100% losses of calves within a herd and animal welfare issues. Alongside reduced native animals such as lizards. Why would a wild dog chase a kangaroo when it could have easy prey of a newborn calf or a lamb?

The dogs that we see are cross-bred with aboriginal hunting dogs (staghound, wolfhound etc) as well as traditional looking dingoes. We boundary the APY Lands and Tallaringa Conservation Park where dogs are not managed.
We would support aerial baiting outside of the dog fence. Due to large land areas we cannot get everywhere with a vehicle.

A dingo is an introduced animal - what makes it more important than other introduced animals such as cattle and sheep?
Cattle and sheep are using grasslands which could not be utilised for any other purpose and are producing food and fibre for the world.

We don't have any scientific data behind us, but we are on the ground everyday seeing the effects of what damage dogs can do and the benefits of controlling them.

Government Agency

PIRSA Wild Dog Coordination Team > Francesca Fennell

04 Mar 2020

Hi Francesca

Thank you for sharing your practical, on ground experience and knowledge of wild dogs and their management in the north of the state.

Your comments and perspective will be considered during the review of the SA Wild Dog Policy.

Justine PHILIP > Francesca Fennell

06 Mar 2020

The dingo is a cultural keystone species, see: https://theconversation.com/living-blanket-water-diviner-wild-pet-a-cultural-history-of-the-dingo-80189
They are also legally a native species.
The results of the wild dog impact on your property are indeed terrible and do not conform to results of trials undertaken by the CSIRO and others, that find supporting dingo populations beneficial to cattle production. To lose 100% of carves is staggering and completely out of character, suggesting that there is something very different at play within the local environment and management practice that requires urgent attention. I would suggest getting CSIRO specialist out to look at the condition of the stock and land. As for supporting aerial baiting, it is proven to have a 71% uptake by non-target species and very poor uptake (less than 1%) by dingoes.

Francesca Fennell > Francesca Fennell

06 Mar 2020

I was hesitant to put our comments on a page like this, where as it demonstrates people feel the need to argue and belittle others for having their opinion.
I did because I feel its important to have someone's perspective who is affected by wild dogs.
This forum I thought was to "Have your say" on proposed wild dog legislation - not to comment and argue with others who may have a different view to yours.

Government Agency

Wild Dog Planning Officer > Francesca Fennell

13 Mar 2020

Hi Francesca,

Thank you for bringing your perspective to this forum. It is important for people to understand both sides of this issue.

Regards
Brad Page
Principal Biosecurity Officer - Pest Animals

David Pollock

27 Feb 2020

Firstly, the term 'wild dog' conjures up an image in the publics mind that is deliberately misleading. The very great majority of the dogs that this policy refers to look, act, play the ecological role for, and are genetically, dingo. If the public realised that the overwhelming majority of the animals referred to in this document look like the picture-postcard dingo, they would be much less inclined to support it. The term 'wild dog' is a term new to the last decade, and created by those with a vested interest in profiting from increased 1080 baiting. Stop misleading the public and call them what they are.

There is a much greater issue here than stock (overwhelmingly sheep) losses. Management of the Dingo is inextricably linked to land management, especially in semi-arid landscapes. Sustainable land management on behalf of the people of South Australia as required by SA legislation will not be achieved in semi-arid landscapes without the dingo.

The intended outcomes of the policy change are to:
1. Protect and support the growth of South Australia’s resilient sheep industry.

If it's so resilient why does it need tax-payer funded help to control dingos? The pastoral industry initially (when the landscape was in much better condition) needed no govt support to remove the dingo. But has since has caused an appalling decline in range condition, leading to a ecological, financial and social collapse of a once-great industry. The ecological collapse is well documented in South Australia (and other states and territories). Even more so than overstocking, the decline in rangeland condition has been driven by unmanaged rangeland animals; goats, kangaroos, and rabbits. Goats and rabbits are listed as Key Threatening Processes to the Australian landscape under the Environmental Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999. Kangaroo numbers have exploded since their natural predator, the dingo, have been removed, and now exert an unsustainable amount of pressure of rangeland resources. These animals prohibit the effective rest of any pastoral lands so that they can regain their former productivity. Biodiversity has also been decimated by foxes, which can be entirely removed by dingos. Dingos also affect feral cat numbers and behavior. Foxes and cats are also listed as Key Threatening Processes under the EPBC act. Dingos are our only viable option for controlling these animals.

By excluding the dingo from the landscape the SA government will be ensuring that unmanaged grazers, particularly Goats and Kangaroos, continue to decimate the pastoral resource, reducing its capacity for future generations. Goats and kangaroos can be harvested for short-term profit, but they cannot be effectively managed because they cannot be contained by normal stock fences. At the height of feral goat and kangaroo harvest in the 1990s in Western Australias Southern rangelands, a very similar circumstance to the SA rangelands, goats and kangaroos constituted 61% of grazing pressure. This means that appropriate grazing management involving resting pastures is impossible. This leads to pastoralists refraining from better management of their stock, because the unmanaged animals negate the effects of better management. Much more expensive fences will control goat and kangaroo movements, but these fences are uneconomical to build in semi-arid, low-producing and degraded areas because of the distances involved.

The sheep industry must be moved to regions that are productive enough to support smaller properties, where goat, kangaroo, and therefore dingo-proof fencing can be economically justified through the landholder's own finances. SA government can then join the gaps in the fence as required. But maintaining expensive fences and baiting programs over large areas of arid and degraded rangeland to "virtually eradicate' the one thing that threatens to restore the productive capacity of those regions is an incredible folly. 'Virtually' is an important word here, because the dingos are not going away. The expensive measures the SA govt is currently using, and proposing to increase expenditure on, will not get rid of the dingo. They will always be waiting for the next opportunity to get back in. This discussion will be played out every time the fence needs replacing (every 25 years) and every year money is put towards maintenance and ineffectual baiting programs (studies indicate baits dont kill many dingos, they just break up dingo pack structures which lead to desperate animals who attack calves). Meanwhile, the pastoral resource upon which the sheep depend will continue its decline in productivity due to the protected, but unmanaged animals on the inside. At some point, the people of SA will have to look at the bigger ecological picture if they want pastoralism to continue in those areas.

2. Reduce the risk of wild dogs attacking people.

This is ridiculous. There have been no dingo attacks in the area that this policy relates to. The whole of Australia was settled by people who slept in swags, completely exposed to dingos, nobody ever got attacked. All dingo attacks occur where people feed dingos. Just stop feeding the dingos. Particularly, Fraser Island. Will Fraser Island be baited? Of course not. This argument is perpetuated by the same people who created the term "wild dog" and is pure propaganda.

3. Maintain the ecological role of wild dogs and their role in Aboriginal culture, outside the Dog Fence.

Its important to point out that the creators of this policy are not actually doing anything to achieve this on the outside of the fence, its just a way to spin the fact that they intend to maintain and strengthen the removal of the important ecological role of a top-order predator over half of the state of SA. At great financial cost to the taxpayers of SA, to their immediate and ongoing financial detriment. Like as if that's a good thing. But it begs the question: What will fulfill the ecological role (and the role in Aboriginal culture seem as you mentioned it) of the dingo in the other half of South Australia? Especially in expansive and remote semi-arid regions? Is there no need for something to fulfill that ecological role? Are Kangaroos, Goats, rabbits, pigs, foxes and cats not an issue in SA? Is the ongoing and wholesale degradation of large swathes of SA rangeland resources and biodiversity worth naught, compared to the (brief and destructive) historical value of rangeland sheep production?

The only thing that this policy protects is the steadfast obstinance of pastoralists who refuse to raise a more ecologically appropriate animal, and the financial gain from those that make 1080 baits. If the SA government was interested in a solution, they should facilitate the transition of 1080 baiting from targetting dingos to feral cats, to protect what is left of our biodiversity. Help pastoralists inside the fence transition to cattle, and create (and re-instate) the extension services that will allow a progression towards sustainable management systems. Facilitate moving the dingo-proof fence to areas where the land is productive enough to pay for its ongoing maintenance, and where farming is intensive enough that land managers can effectively control unmanaged grazers/pest species themselves. Sheep prices will rise as a result, enabling even more financial capacity for those areas. This is an actual solution, that learns from past mistakes to build a better future. The proposed policy changes will only prolong and compound the mistakes of the past for future generations to endure.

Government Agency

PIRSA Wild Dog Coordination Team > David Pollock

04 Mar 2020

Thank you for your perspective and comments.

South Australian legislation defines wild dogs as wild-living dogs, including dingoes, domestic dogs living at large and their hybrids. It would be a misnomer if we were to describe wild dogs as dingoes, because so many wild dogs are hybrids, or pure bred domestic dogs gone wild, including staffies, fox terriers, wolf hounds, kelpies and cattle dogs. All wild living dogs, including dingoes and their hybrids, damage and kill livestock in the same way. It is both irrelevant and impossible for people controlling wild dogs to determine whether a wild dog is a purebred dingo or a hybrid. Further reading: Jackson et al 2017, The Wayward Dog: is the Australian native dog or Dingo a distinct species?

You suggested that the "SA government can then join the gaps in the fence as required". Such joining of vermin proof fences was undertaken in 1946, when the SA Dog Fence was established. Like Goyder’s line, the fence is more than just a line on a map. The fence splits pastoral country, which is most suitable for cattle (outside the fence) from sheep country, which is inside the fence. Your suggestion would result in cattle producers being forced to occupy country that is most suited to the production of wool and lamb.

Landowners are responsible for the control of wild dogs on their own properties through baiting, shooting and trapping, which they undertake at their own expense. If the landholders choose to purchase manufactured baits they do so at their own expense. The funding for the aerial baiting to inaccessible areas is provided by the sheep industry and levies on pastoral land holders.

Financial support from State and Commonwealth governments is sometimes required when the impacts of wild dogs get out of hand. Targeted government support helps to support livestock producers and is sometimes required to maintain the viability of our pastoral industry. The pastoral industry is a valuable part of the South Australian economy, through its production of food and fibre and because it supports regional and remote towns and tourism enterprises. Maintaining the viability of the pastoral industry is valuable to the economy of the state through the support of regional and remote towns and tourism enterprises.

Wild dogs do sometimes attack people, such as was the case yesterday in Exmouth https://www.abc.net.au/news/2020-03-03/woman-injured-dog-killed-in-wild-dog-attack-at-exmouth-beach/12020454. In SA there have been instances around mine sites and tourism campgrounds where wild dogs have been culled because of threatening behaviours towards humans.

Feral cats do not attack sheep in the way wild dogs do. We agree that our control programs need to target all pests, but we do not agree that wild dogs are a silver bullet to address the issues that have driven the extinction of mammals, birds and reptiles across Australia.

The suppression of prey by wild dogs is heavily contested. There are many papers on the value of wild dogs in the environment, but there are many others that draw opposing conclusions. The distribution and abundance of dingoes have increased across Australia since Europeans introduced additional waters and prey. Returning Australian landscapes to their pre-European condition is not possible, and as a result all of our introduced species, including dingoes, need to be managed.

Your feedback will be considered in the review of the policy for wild dogs.

Regards
Heather Miller
Wild Dog Planning Coordinator

David Pollock > David Pollock

05 Mar 2020

Hi Heather, I have included a breakdown of your statement, because there a number of things I would like to highlight, and I feel the message will be clearer when shown alongside your comments. Your comments in commas:

'South Australian legislation defines wild dogs as wild-living dogs, including dingoes, domestic dogs living at large and their hybrids.' -----Yes this is the problem

'It would be a misnomer if we were to describe wild dogs as dingoes, because so many wild dogs are hybrids, or pure bred domestic dogs gone wild, including staffies, fox terriers, wolf hounds, kelpies and cattle dogs.'-----To the contrary, it is a misnomer to label all dingoes wild dogs, because there are so few animals that do not look and act, nor are they genetically different from pure dingos.

'All wild living dogs, including dingoes and their hybrids, damage and kill livestock in the same way.'-----Yes this is true, which is why you dont care whether they are dingoes or hybrids. It is the reason you maintain that they must be called wild dogs, because you seek to kill them all regardless.

'It is both irrelevant and impossible for people controlling wild dogs to determine whether a wild dog is a purebred dingo or a hybrid.'-----I disagree whether its irrelevant, and I believe the majority of the public would also disagree. In the first instance, the public would be surprised to learn that any of them are dingoes. This is largely due to the myth perpetuated by people such as wild dog co-ordinators that there are few purebred dingos left. The public feel very different about dingoes compared to wild dogs, and they would be surprised to learn that their taxpaying dollars are going towards killing mostly picture-postcard dingoes. Regarding the ability to determine, you are correct, which is why we might as well call them dingoes as that is what the overwhelming majority of them are.

'Further reading: Jackson et al 2017, The Wayward Dog: is the Australian native dog or Dingo a distinct species?"'-----THIS is irrelevant, I did not assert that dingoes are a different species, merely that the animals referred to under the policy changes are predominately dingoes, and that the public feel very differently about dingoes compared to wild dogs.

'You suggested that the "SA government can then join the gaps in the fence as required". Such joining of vermin proof fences was undertaken in 1946, when the SA Dog Fence was established.'-----Yes but was it placed in an ecologically appropriate location? The historical and ongoing degradation shows us no, it was not. Mostly because of the proliferation of unmanaged grazers such as Goats and Kangaroos, unmanaged grazers that only dingos can manage over very large, sparsely populated, low production areas. By excluding the dingo you will be ensuring that the ecologically sustainable management of pastoral resources (that are required under SA legislation) are unfeasible. Not to mention the ongoing deterioration of native fauna populations

'Like Goyder’s line, the fence is more than just a line on a map.'-----Goyder's line is only a line on a map. Nothing exists along Goyder's line.

'The fence splits pastoral country, which is most suitable for cattle (outside the fence) from sheep country, which is inside the fence.'-----This is incorrect, both sides of the fence along its entire length are pastoral country. Sheep country is a term that means nothing, except that sheep are currently run there. There are cattle on both sides, there used to be sheep on both sides. The suitability of either side is the same for both animals, the only difference is that the dingoes eat the sheep on the north side. The vegetation types of the pastoral resource on both sides are Acacia shrublands (predominately Mulga), Chenopod shrublands, and Mallee.

'Your suggestion would result in cattle producers being forced to occupy country that is most suited to the production of wool and lamb.'-----Incorrect, for the reasons stated above. The amount of cattle currently run on the south side, when measured in DSE, wouldn't be much different to the amount of sheep.

'Landowners are responsible for the control of wild dogs on their own properties through baiting, shooting and trapping, which they undertake at their own expense. If the landholders choose to purchase manufactured baits they do so at their own expense. The funding for the aerial baiting to inaccessible areas is provided by the sheep industry and levies on pastoral land holders.'------On one hand you say that landholders pay for it themselves, but then you say:

'Financial support from State and Commonwealth governments is sometimes required when the impacts of wild dogs get out of hand. Targeted government support helps to support livestock producers and is sometimes required to maintain the viability of our pastoral industry.'-----Which backs up my original arguement.

'The pastoral industry is a valuable part of the South Australian economy, through its production of food and fibre and because it supports regional and remote towns and tourism enterprises. Maintaining the viability of the pastoral industry is valuable to the economy of the state through the support of regional and remote towns and tourism enterprises.'-----No argument from me there! I'm a pastoralist, who lives in the only shire in Australia without a town, who also runs a tourism enterprise. We also used to be sheep country, in fact the whole district was, but now the whole district runs cattle, and due to the repopulation of dingos the landscape is slowly recovering from the effects of unmanaged grazers. This has dramatically improved the viability of the district. My point, which perhaps you missed, is that the pastoral industry would be much more profitable and infinitely better managed ecologically (and therefore more profitable into the future) if dingoes were allowed to control unmanaged grazers on vast and remote properties. The sheep and wool producers (on the inside of the newer, smaller fence) would also benefit financially from a decrease in supply, which would increase demand and therefore prices for their product. The state of SA and all its people would be the winners!

'Wild dogs do sometimes attack people, such as was the case yesterday in Exmouth https://www.abc.net.au/news/2020-03-03/woman-injured-dog-killed-in-wild-dog-attack-at-exmouth-beach/12020454.' -----Is that seriously your response? A woman injured her lip defending her dog on the Exmouth dog beach? If it is, you have more than adequately demonstrated the lengths you (and others who rely on killing dingoes for a living) are willing to go to promote unnecessary hysteria. She said she didn't even know if she was bitten by a dog.

'In SA there have been instances around mine sites and tourism campgrounds where wild dogs have been culled because of threatening behaviours towards humans.'-----So my statement that -There have been no dingo attacks in the area that this policy relates to- is correct then? Also, all these areas are where dingoes were being fed, and almost all in areas where there are signs saying DO NOT FEED THE DINGOES!

'Feral cats do not attack sheep in the way wild dogs do.'-----Is anyone suggesting that they do?

'We agree that our control programs need to target all pests, but we do not agree that wild dogs are a silver bullet to address the issues that have driven the extinction of mammals, birds and reptiles across Australia.'-----Even I'm not suggesting that they are a silver bullet (for cats, they are for foxes) -but dingoes (not wild dogs) are certainly the cheapest and best chance we've got!

'The suppression of prey by wild dogs is heavily contested. There are many papers on the value of wild dogs in the environment, but there are many others that draw opposing conclusions.'-----You are suggesting that the evidence is 50/50, which it isnt. Overwhelmingly, and increasingly, the scientific community is in agreeance that healthy Australian ecosystems require a top order predator. Also, the majority of papers published that refute these findings are funded by organisations that financially rely upon the continuation of policys that kill dingoes. Like Pestsmart. Also, there are no goats where dingos are common, as goats are pretty much the same animal as a sheep from a dingoes point of view. If you don't believe dingoes wipe out goats, why are you worried they will wipe out the sheep?

'The distribution and abundance of dingoes have increased across Australia since Europeans introduced additional waters and prey.'-----Incorrect, dingoes have been removed from much of their former territory, especially from areas that would have had higher densities of them, as these are the areas most suitable for farming. What has increased in number is their natural prey, the kangaroo. Kangaroos are in plague proportions in pretty much all areas that dingoes have been removed from. But it begs the question, if you believe that there are more dingoes now, why do you insist on calling them all wild dogs?

'Returning Australian landscapes to their pre-European condition is not possible, and as a result all of our introduced species, including dingoes, need to be managed.'-----Who is suggesting returning landscapes to pre-European condition? Certainly not me. But we do need to protect the soil, and the plant diversity that enables profitable and ongoing pastoral production. For that you need good grazing mangement. Given that dingoes are the only thing that can provide management for Goats and Kangaroos, and those animals have a grazing footprint that is roughly equal to that of stock, responsible management of large arid landscapes is very unlikely to be achieved without the dingo.

Your feedback will be considered in the review of the policy for wild dogs.

Government Agency

PIRSA Wild Dog Coordination Team > David Pollock

05 Mar 2020

Thank you. Your comments and perspective will be considered during the review of the SA Wild Dog Policy.

katherine moseby > David Pollock

05 Mar 2020

Great response David. Your well thought out arguments are supported by science and accurate.

Belinda Whitten

22 Feb 2020

For generations the general public has been conditioned to consider dingoes/dingo hybrids ("wild dogs") as a threat. Yet science is showing us time and time again that our native apex predator plays a protective role for the many threatened plant and animal species we have. The proposed changes to SA legislation appear to be largely focused on mandating that all land holders must use poison baiting to ostensibly protect the sheep industry. In doing so, the proposed changes will remove the right for these land holders to choose in which way they will protect their stock and land. There are many other (more humane) methods used successfully in both Australia and around the world to protect sheep flocks from canine predators. Increasingly there are also farmers who are recognising the value dingoes can play on their land enabling them to farm economically and sustainably. Unfortunately poisons like 1080 pose an enormous risk to some of these alternatives which include the use of guardian dogs. As some of the other comments here highlight, the use of poisions is also in direct conflict with organic practices which are becoming increasingly valued and recognised.

The price of the proposed enforceable changes economically is likely to far exceed the cost of compensating farmers for the relatively minor (in terms of % of flock) stock losses experienced by dingoes. The cost to the biodiversity of our land and it's native animals will be far higher and dingoes can play an active role in protecting this. https://newsroom.unsw.edu.au/news/science-tech/dingo-fence-study-shows-dingo-extermination-leads-poorer-soil
The proposed changes in the policy to remove the references to dingo and replace with wild dog is also of great concern .
The persistence of government agencies in referring to dingoes as wild dogs when the science shows that they are a distinct species and that the vast majority of animals tested have at least a 50% and generally much higher % of dingo could be construed as either willfully ignorant or deliberately misleading. This research refers to NSW which is generally accepted to have higher hybridisation rates than SA and so the point is even more relevant for SA. https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=10218829774528948&set=gm.1348512171987446&type=3&theater&ifg=1
https://theconversation.com/dingoes-found-in-new-south-wales-but-were-killing-them-as-wild-dogs-126184

Finally, the proposed changes state "The revised policy also aims to maintain the ecological role of wild dogs and their role in Aboriginal culture, outside the Dog Fence." This could be interpreted as being highly offensive to Aboriginal people suggesting that dingoes only have a role to play in certain geographies. Colonial Australia has a long history of failing to recognise the connection to land of our first nations people and I am surprised and disappointed to see that yet again we are defining artificial boundaries where cultural connections 'may exist' and where they may not.

Thank you for creating an opportunity for public comment and I look forward to to the many comments made being used to constructively inform significant revision to the proposed policy.

Government Agency

PIRSA Wild Dog Coordination Team > Belinda Whitten

01 Mar 2020

Hello Belinda

Thank you for your perspective on wild dog control in SA and your contribution to the review of the SA Wild Dog Policy.

Outside the Dog Fence in SA, under the National Parks and Wildlife Act 1972, the dingo is an unprotected wildlife species. This area outside the Fence totals over 50% of the state. Approximately half is Aboriginal Lands or National/Conservation Parks and the rest being utilised for livestock production (cattle). It is unusual for wild dog/dingo control to be undertaken in the Aboriginal Lands and National Parks in this area as those decisions are made through the respective Landscape Boards and National Parks Executive. The livestock producers outside the Dog Fence are limited in their ability to control wild dogs through the management plans of the respective Landscape Boards (Alinytjara Wilurara and SA Arid Lands). Inside the Dog Fence the wild dog is a declared animal under the Landscapes SA Act 2019 so all landholders must control the wild dog, no matter the tenure.

Organic certifiers Australia wide have provided organic properties with measures to ensure organic sheep and cattle properties do not become safe havens for wild dogs. The organic certification bodies provide guidelines which outline how organic producers are permitted to use bait. Organic producers must ensure their property management plans include appropriate baiting procedures, which may involve allowing sufficient area for organic stock to be excluded from baiting activities.

Your feedback will be considered in the review of the policy for wild dogs.

Regards
Heather Miller
Wild Dog Planning Coordinator

Robert McIntosh

21 Feb 2020

You are very misguided in your understanding of dingos and their contributions. Please read this letter from 24 scientific experts from many universities to our federal ministers for the environment and agriculture.
"We strongly emphasise the ecological importance of terrestrial apex predators in biodiversity resilience and ecosystem functioning. Dingoes are the sole non-human land-based top predator on the Australian mainland. Their importance to the ecological health and resilience of Australian ecosystems cannot be overstated, from regulating wild herbivore abundance (e.g. various kangaroo species), to reducing the impacts of feral mesopredators (cats, foxes) on native marsupials (Johnson & VanDerWal 2009; Wallach et al. 2010; Letnic et al. 2012; Letnic et al. 2013; Newsome et al. 2015; Morris & Letnic 2017). It would be hypothesised that continued dramatic reduction of dingo populations, by aerial baiting, will enable introduced mesopredators such as foxes and cats to exploit burnt areas unchecked, posing a high risk to threatened native species. The impacts of feral cats and red foxes are likely to be amplified in disturbed ecosystems, such as those burnt by bushfires. Indiscriminate and non-target specific lethal management should not be implemented if there is a risk to the persistence of threatened native fauna or ecosystem resilience."

Government Agency

PIRSA Wild Dog Coordination Team > Robert McIntosh

26 Feb 2020

Hi Rob
Thanks for your comments and perspective. Your feedback will be considered in the review of the policy for wild dogs.

Natalie Anderson

21 Feb 2020

Baiting is cruel and inhumane. Please read https://wooleen.com.au/the-wooleen-way/ On how our apex predator the Dingo, protects and enriches land and is valued.
Do good, Cause no harm.

Robyn Reichert

21 Feb 2020

CRUEL!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! How can you sleep at night knowing you are TORTURING and ANIMAL to DEATH???? How? This is obscene, humane . barbaric! Find a humane alternative, how cruel!

Government Agency

PIRSA Wild Dog Coordination Team > Robyn Reichert

04 Mar 2020

Thanks for your comments and perspective. Your feedback will be considered in the review of the policy for wild dogs.

Ngapera Williams

21 Feb 2020

Baiting is absolutely ludacris. 1080 kills all wildlife not only dogs. It poisons waterways. What are you thinking. Look at New Zealand and the loss of native flaura and fauna and the impact its had on the land. Dingos are misunderstood. They are NATIVE to Australia and they have a Spirit they are alive. Dont be murderers.

Government Agency

PIRSA Wild Dog Coordination Team > Ngapera Williams

01 Mar 2020

Good evening Ngapera, thanks for your comments and perspective. Your feedback will be considered in the review of the policy for wild dogs.

Sally Johnson

21 Feb 2020

The Dingo is not a wild dog, it is a Dingo. Dropping bait not only kills the Dingo but it kills everything else in the slowest most agonizing way imaginable. The Dingo can take 32 hours to die screaming in pain. Then the eagles, and all carrion eating bird and animal eat his body and they too die the same terrible death. Any herbivore that eats one can also die. This is NOT an animal specific poison. Anyone who can drop this and turn a blind eye to the pain and suffering they have caused would have loved working in Auschwitz!
We are murdering our wildlife at a rate that makes us look like insane people. Believe me we share all this information world wide so everyone can know what a despicable country we live in. We should hang out heads in shame, between shooting pregnant mares from helicopters to slaughtering animals willynilly, Australian Governments are a disgrace and Sth Aust should NOT join in this horrific display of uncaring slaughter.

Sally Johnson > Sally Johnson

21 Feb 2020

Just an update on how this poison kills from Aussie Dingo Day on Facebook
Right now....everyday native wildlife and even pets are dying the most inhumane death....😪Because of 1080 poison!
Nothing is immune to 1080 although there are some species that are not as sensitive as others.
1080 is NOT a plant derivative - what they use for baiting is compound 1080 which is synthetically produced....

1080 only creates the illusion of an immediate solution, usually for short sighted economic gains....This poison is torture!
1080 (sodium monofluroacetate) is a cruel and indiscriminate poison used to remove unwanted populations of animals.
Banned in most countries, 1080 is still used liberally throughout Australia to control so called pest species, and reduce browsing damage caused by native animals on private land....

1080 is a slow killer....When ingested (usually through baited food) the animal suffers a prolonged and horrific death.
Herbivores take the longest to die up to 36 hours, while carnivores can take up to 21 hours before finally succumbing to final effects of the poison. The speed of death is dependent on the rate of the animals metabolism.

A slow and Horrific death:
Carnivorous animals such as Dingoes, dogs, foxes, and cats become very agitated, as they tremble, convulse and vomit.
The list of symptoms include:
Restlessness, increased hyperexcitability, incontinence or diarrhea, excessive salivation, abrupt bouts of vocalisation, and finally sudden bursts of violent activity. All affected animals then fall to the ground in teranic seizure, with hind limbs or all four limbs and sometimes the tail extended rigidly from their arched bodies. At all other times the front feet are clasped together, clenched or used to scratch frantically. This tonic phase is then followed by a clonic phase in which the animals lie and kick or "paddle" with the front legs and squeal, crawl around and bite at objects. During this phase the tongue and penis may be extruded, their eyes rolled back so that only the whites show and the teeth ground together. Their breathing is rapid but laboured, with some animals partly choking on their saliva. Then finally such individuals begin to relax, breathing more slowly and shallowly and lying quietly with the hind legs still extended but apparently semiparalysed....

From the above descriptions, it is without question that 1080 poison inflicts great pain and suffering on affected animals. Aside from the physical pain endured over the many hours before death, the terror, fear and anxiety felt by these animals is unimaginable....How can anyone inflict such a nightmare on any being?

Government Agency

PIRSA Wild Dog Coordination Team > Sally Johnson

01 Mar 2020

Hi Sally, your perspective and comments will be taken into account during the consultation process of the review of the SA Wild Dog Policy.

Mel Browning

21 Feb 2020

Dingoes, as Australia's native apex land predator, are a critical species providing ecosystem stability / resilience and thriving biodiversity, resulting in a win-win for farmers and wildlife. A 2017 UNSW study conducted on both sides of the dingo fence, concluded that on the south-side of the fence, where dingoes were few because of lethal control programs, kangaroo numbers were prolific and overgrazing resulted in the loss of smaller shrubs and grasses exposing soils and depleting nutrients. On the north-side, stable dingo populations kept the kangaroo populations in balance resulting in an abundance native grasses and shrubs, which not only preserved the health of the soil biota but provided habitat and predator cover for smaller threatened species. https://newsroom.unsw.edu.au/news/science-tech/dingo-fence-study-shows-dingo-extermination-leads-poorer-soil The most notable, large scale ecological restoration project ever undertaken over the past decade in Australia, is in the southern rangelands of WA, undertaken by pastoralist, David Pollock. In his book 'The Wooleen Way', David states: 'Without the dingo it seems unlikely to me that we'll ever recover the productivity of the landscape.' 'We used to have alot of foxes, but as the dingoes have reclaimed the rangelands, they rapidly disappeared.' 'Now, turtle tracks are a common sight after rain. The same is true for all ground-nesting birds and small animals: dingoes reduce the number of predators (foxes and cats), which makes it easier for prey to prosper.' https://www.centralstation.net.au/doggone-kangaroos/ The only winners in spreading poisons are pest control agencies and poison manufacturers. Kill off dingoes and bigger problems are created for farmers in the loss of productivity of the landscape from explosions in feral herbivores such as rabbits, feral pigs, feral goats as well as explosions in roo numbers. As top order predators, stable dingo populations fiercely defend their territories against roaming feral dogs and suppress breeding among subordinates. Kill dingoes and sheep farmers will experience greater numbers of foxes filling the niche. Government pest control agency personnel need to be retrained to assist farmers in transitioning towards coexistence with dingoes and non-lethal livestock protection strategies such as livestock guardian animals that have proven to be very successful even on sizable sheep stations such as Dunluce: http://www.dunluce.com.au/articles/maremmas.html The millions spent on maintaining the Dingo Fence and baiting programs needs to be redirected into directly compensating farmers for livestock losses and investing in effective non-lethal livestock protection strategies. The synthetically manufactured super toxin,1080 poison, is cruel and indiscriminate and negatively impacts on predator assemblages, killing dingoes and favouring destructive introduced foxes and feral cats. To say that 1080 poison is naturally occurring and native species are immune is a lie. Many native species uptake baits and the damaging effects of repeated non-lethal exposure are unknown. 1080 poison poses a risk to working dogs and it can remain toxic for many months in the carcasses of poisoned animals.

Government Agency

PIRSA Wild Dog Coordination Team > Mel Browning

25 Feb 2020

Hi Mel
Thank you for your contribution to the discussion on the reviewed SA Wild Dog Policy.
Outside the Dog Fence in SA, cattle are the only livestock utilised for production purposes and the wild dog is considered a native species, where it performs important ecological cultural roles. In this area, control is only undertaken when impacts are high.
Inside the Dog Fence is where the sheep industry is focussed therefore wild dogs are a declared under the Landscapes SA Act 2019. Wild dogs and sheep cannot co-habit. While cattle are impacted by wild dogs, sheep sustain larger impacts due wild dogs apparently hunting for fun, rather than as an immediate food source.
Inside the Dog Fence, livestock producers do not rely on just one particular form of control, but instead they work as part of a coordinated management strategy utilising all available tools.
PIRSA, SA Murray Darling NRM Board and the Eyre Pensinsula NRM Board recently funded several workshops with livestock producers, conservationists and Australia’s leading maremma advocates and researchers. The workshops highlighted that maremmas are being used in some small livestock farms, but all of the presenters highlighted that maremmas are not a viable, nor cost effective solution for wild dog management on vast pastoral stations such as those in South Australia. Most importantly, maremma’s do not help landholders to meet their wild dog control obligations.
Research into public attitudes to wild dog control can be found at https://www.pestsmart.org.au/wp-content/uploads/2010/03/PublicAttitudesPestCtrl_FULL_REPORT.pdf

katherine moseby > Mel Browning

05 Mar 2020

What is the definition of "high impact"? There is nothing in the revised policy that states the triggers for control or how dingo density or impact will be measured.

Jake Gordon

20 Feb 2020

Absolutely disgusted about the continuing use of 1080 throughout Australia, this is not a humane for an animal to die. Australia tends to propel policies that just advocate for the killing of species left right and centre, it has been proven over and over again that by taking out the Apex predators in the ecological system it destroys the system, it allows the ability for mesopredators to dominate the area especially feral cats and foxes. That’s why we are seeing a huge reduction across many species throughout Australia. I am yet to understand how the government can continue to kill a huge variety of animals using 1080, just out recently the quokka in WA is struggling due to 1080, the indiscriminate baiting effects the ecosystem much worse than allowing the Apex predator to survive in the wild. The government can freely kill animals through 1080 baiting yet if someone went and took an animal from the wild to keep as a pet they will face the full force of the law. Absolutely atrocious, we are the only country in the world to label the native canine as a wild dog, America has wolves and coyotes but we call our unique canine a wild dog, absolutely ashamed to call Australia home and absolutely ashamed to call South Australia my birthplace,

Government Agency

PIRSA Wild Dog Coordination Team > Jake Gordon

01 Mar 2020

Hi Jake
Research on the Pest Smart website https://www.pestsmart.org.au/1080-poison-baiting-facts/ is as follows:
•There is no threat from 1080 baiting, used to control wild dogs, foxes and feral cats, to all of the populations of native animals that have been studied, including 29 species of native birds, 7 species of native reptiles and amphibians and 44 species of native mammals (including carnivorous marsupials such as the Spotted Tail Quoll).
•Many Australian native animals are tolerant to 1080 because over 30 Australian native plants naturally produce sodium fluoroacetate which is found in 1080 baits and the synthetically manufactured 1080 is identical to, and retains all the properties of, the natural sodium fluoroacetate poison found in these Australian native plants.
•1080 is highly soluble and biodegradable. This means it breaks down in water, soil and in carcasses over time (in hot, humid weather, it only takes a few days) and has limited impact on the environment.
Regards
Heather Miller
Wild Dog Planning Officer

Justine PHILIP > Jake Gordon

06 Mar 2020

"There is no threat from 1080 baiting": Incorrect.
We just don't know how much impact it has on native populations because it is not possible to gather this data. In trials with 1080 ground-laid baits, over 71% were eaten by native species - goanna, crows, marsupials etc. Less than 1.5% was eaten by dingoes - and those just juvenile dingoes. Repeat doses of 1080 are lethal:
In a report, published by the NSW Office of Environment and Heritage, Professor Lesley Hughes (2008) noted that though 1080 poison has been used since the 1950s, there has never been standard protocols for its application across Australia, and that evidence of the impact on non-target species was “largely anecdotal” (Hughes, 2008):
"... Secondary poisoning is possible through consumption of undigested bait in the stomach of a poisoned animal.
Target species sometimes vomit stomach contents containing high concentrations of 1080, which is then potentially eaten by non-target fauna. Maggots in meat baits can accumulate enough toxin to kill a vertebrate (e.g. insectivorous bird) that picks multiple maggots from the bait. Secondary poisoning has been demonstrated to kill individual non-target animals but no data are available demonstrating that such poisoning can cause significant reduction in the population sizes of native species in NSW."
Hughes wrote that the negative impacts were “potentially great and mortality of individuals has been recorded”. However, she supported continued baiting programs, because (2008):
"... there is currently no substantive evidence that, in NSW: (a) it adversely affects threatened species, populations or ecological communities, or (b) could cause species, populations or ecological communities that are not threatened to become threatened."

Graeme Finlayson

18 Feb 2020

I'm interested in the data you are using to draw the conclusion that "Wild dog populations and distributions have increased inside the Dog Fence in South Australia over the past two decades." As an ecologist who works in the region I am yet to see any robust survey data that investigates the distribution and abundance of wild dogs. I am aware that some of the information is based on interviewing landholders but to adequately assess population distribution and abundance would require intensive surveys with track surveys, camera monitoring and/or collaring of animals, which to my knowledge does not exist. I look forward to hearing from you regarding this as for any change to legislation around wild dog control, this data is critical.

Government Agency

PIRSA Wild Dog Coordination Team > Graeme Finlayson

24 Feb 2020

Good morning Graeme

Thank you for your comments and perspective on data collection.
Our surveys provide reliable trends of the impacts of wild dogs on livestock in South Australia’s rangelands. Survey data such as these are sometimes undervalued by ecologists, but we are confident that the data provide a reliable indication of the impacts of wild dogs.
Properties being utilised for livestock production, conservation, Aboriginal culture and mining provide us with evidence of sighted and controlled wild dogs as well as livestock damage, all of which have been increasing.
The government trapper program also provides us with evidence of wild dogs being controlled in high numbers and in areas where they have not been reported for many years, such as in our northern agricultural districts.

Heather Miller
Wild Dog Planning Coordinator

Graeme Finlayson > Graeme Finlayson

24 Feb 2020

Thank you for your reply Heather. I’m not sure whether you are suggesting that as an ecologist I am undervaluing your data, I am actually just keen to see some of these data in the public domain. I always value the views of landholders that have spent a significant time looking after their patch and when there are significant impacts to stock I imagine in most cases this is heartbreaking. However, there are many other factors that need to be considered when measuring impact so when there are significant changes being proposed to the legislation it would be nice to see these decisions backed up with some real data - be it trends from interviewing landholders or by your staff conducting trapping surveys or collecting census data. I do hope that the results of the surveys you mention can be made available for all to consider. Thanks again for your reply and I look forward to hearing from you again.

Justine PHILIP > Graeme Finlayson

06 Mar 2020

Hi Heather,
Yes it is really important to put this information into the public domain, as most assessments of population density are anecdotal. Can you supply the actual data to support the claim? How many more dogs are being trapped, how many more recorded etc. Thanks.

Chilli Laylor

11 Feb 2020

Why isn’t the individual farmer responsible for his or her stock if you have decided to farm sheep, shouldn’t the farmer be putting up appropriate fencing to say stop the necessity of littering the landscape with poisoned meat. When will the wildlife stop taking second place to the profits of others. Is it NRM natural resources management or FPA farmers protection agency. And what wild dogs the only thing running up and down the Birdsville track are domestic dogs - Irish Wolf hounds. And have you ever seen a 1080 sign on the Track? How will you stop the baits getting washed into waterways when there is. A rain event? If landholders can’t be trusted to put the signs out how can you in trust them to do the baiting by air responsibly - how’s that going to work for the organics ? Nothing organic about the meat coming of properties that use 1080 and are still using strychnine on carcass’s.

Government Agency

PIRSA Wild Dog Coordination Team > Chilli Laylor

17 Feb 2020

Hello Chilli
Thanks for your comments and perspective.
The definition of 'wild dogs' is all wild-living dogs including dingoes, domestic dogs living at large and their hybrids.
Under the Landscapes SA Act 2019 wild dogs are declared inside the Dog Fence and landholders have a responsibility to destroy them.
Landholders and managers must sign an Approval to Possess 1080 and PAPP Bait form when they collect baits from their local NRM officer. Non-compliance with mandatory instructions in these Directions for Use (including signage) is an offence under the Controlled Substances Act, 1984 and the Agricultural and Veterinary Products (Control of Use) Act, 2002. Further information on 1080 baiting can be obtained on the PIRSA website.
Under the Animal Welfare Act 1985 and Regulations, traps for wild dogs must be treated with a toxin (currently strychnine) to ensure a rapid death for any animal caught. The use of strychnine in any other way is illegal other than on traps for wild dogs.
To ensure organic sheep and cattle properties do not become safe havens for wild dogs, organic certifiers provide guidelines which outline how organic producers are permitted to use bait. Organic producers must ensure their property management plans include appropriate baiting procedures, which may involve allowing sufficient area for organic stock to be excluded from baiting activities.
Thank you again, your feedback will be considered in the review of the policy for wild dogs.
Heather Miller
Wild Dog Planning Coordinator

David Pollock > Chilli Laylor

27 Feb 2020

so...no answer as to why sheep producers shouldnt be protecting their own stock?

Government Agency

PIRSA Wild Dog Coordination Team > Chilli Laylor

01 Mar 2020

Hi David and Chilli
Sheep producers spend enormous amounts of time and money undertaking control of wild dogs through shooting, trapping and baiting on their individual properties as well as through the distribution of baits on their properties. They provide fresh meat for 1080 baits that they strategically place themselves (only government employees are allowed to handle 1080 solution for injecting into fresh meat baits). If the landholders choose to purchase manufactured baits then they have to do so themselves from their own funds. The funding for the aerial baiting program to inaccessible areas is provided by the sheep industry.
Thank you for your comments and perspective.
Regards
Heather Miller
Wild Dog Planning Officer

Darren Alexander

11 Feb 2020

If you are serious about removing wild dogs, pigs, deer then there should be a bounty ie $5 each. I would approach gun clubs/ shops to promote the idea and pay shooters for every tail they bring in as proof.

Government Agency

Wild Dog Planning Officer > Darren Alexander

17 Feb 2020

Hi Darren
Reviews of past bounty schemes from Australia and around the world show they are an ineffective form of pest animal control and don’t guarantee a significant reduction in wild dog damage. Bounties need considerable supervision, and evidence from past bounty schemes has revealed a range of deceptive and fraudulent behaviours. For example, bounties could be collected from wild dogs that were shot outside the Dog Fence, where there are higher densities of wild dogs, which are not required to be destroyed.
Further information on bounties can be obtained at https://www.pestsmart.org.au/awms-position-statement-on-bounties/
Thank you for your input into the reviewed SA wild dog policy. Your feedback will be considered.
Heather Miller
Wild Dog Planning Coordinator

Sally Johnson > Darren Alexander

21 Feb 2020

How do you sleep at night knowing the pain you are causing

Lee Williams > Darren Alexander

09 Apr 2020

hasn't there been a bounty announcement for wild dogs? By Minister Whetstone?