Research to repel wild dogs

A new project in the north of the State has united farmers, state and local government in a bid to develop an effective wild dog management program.

NSW Department of Primary Industries (NSW DPI) is working with land managers, Rural Land Protection Boards (RLPBs), NSW Farmers Association, Department of Environment and Climate Change, NSW Parks and Wildlife Group, Forests NSW, local councils and other stakeholders to map wild dog activity.

NSW DPI researcher, Guy Ballard, said the first part of the study will run from early July until mid-August in an area bordered by Armidale, Port Macquarie and Tamworth and will next year move further north.

“We will be using a number of different tools to track dogs and pick up their DNA,” Dr Ballard said.

“A crucial part of the data will also come from people who bait, trap, shoot or see evidence of dogs.”

Dr Ballard recommends that any wild dog activity, including the date and place, be reported to local RLPBs.

“Continual monitoring, before and after strategic baiting and trapping, will be used to evaluate the effectiveness of control programs,” he said.

“Using that data we plan to develop a wild dog management program for the local area.”

Funded by the Invasive Animals Cooperative Research Centre and Australian Wool Innovation Ltd the project also aims to manage the interaction between dingoes and domestic dogs.

“Some wild dogs causing problems are the crossbred offspring of domestic dogs and dingoes.

“DNA tracking will help us identify and better manage pure dingo populations.”