Additional ground baiting for wild dogs using funds previously set aside for aerial baiting is underway in north east Victoria.
Agriculture and Food Security Minister Peter Walsh said the additional baiting was being conducted in remote areas of public land that had not previously been baited, including on and off tracks.
“An extra 550 kilometres of land is being baited on top of the existing ground baiting program conducted by the Department of Primary Industries,” Mr Walsh said.
“The extra baiting is being delivered by a panel of contractors engaged by the Department of Primary Industries (DPI) through an Expression of Interest process conducted in September this year.
“Twelve locations in the North East and Gippsland regions of Victoria have been identified for the extra baiting. They were chosen based on the impact of wild dogs to the area and the level of remoteness for traditional wild dog control practices.”
The 12 locations for additional baiting are:
- Upper Murray (4 areas)
- Dargo area (2 areas)
- Bendoc area (1 area)
- Gelantipy area (1 area)
- Southern end of the King Valley (1 area)
- East of Omeo (1 area)
- West of Swifts Creek (1 area)
- East of Ensay (1 area)
This process of additional ground baiting included consultation with the community, the Wild Dog Control Advisory Committee, Victorian DPI Wild Dog Control Field Staff, experienced interstate counterparts, Department of Sustainability and Environment (DSE), and Parks Victoria (PV).
“The Victorian Coalition Government remains committed to aerial baiting, however, the Commonwealth has stalled our application,” Mr Walsh said.
“This additional ground baiting is being undertaken on the advice of the Wild Dog Control Advisory Committee that it is the best available option to use those aerial baiting funds.”
The additional baiting work will take several months to complete, depending on weather.