No free lunches - now a prime time for feral pig control

feral pig control in droughtWith many farmers across the Central West hand-feeding livestock, Local Land Services is reminding landholders that feral pigs will also help themselves to stock feed.

Invasive Species Team Leader Nigel Boyce said landholders are seeing an increase in feral pigs around feeding and water points, which can undermine hand-feeding programs and spread disease.

“The current drought conditions are seeing feral pigs seeking out feed and water from places they would normally avoid,“ Mr Boyce said.

“They are proving quite resourceful in accessing feeders and other feeding points, and cohabitating with livestock to do so.”

Feral pigs joining livestock at feed and water points also greatly increases the chance of spreading disease.

“Feral pigs can carry diseases such as leptospirosis and brucellosis, which can be spread to both livestock and humans with significant health implications,” Mr Boyce said.

While the situation is not ideal, it presents an opportunity to carry out trapping, baiting or a combination of both to effectively reduce the impact caused on agricultural production and the environment.

“We are advising landholders to take action while these pest species are gathered near water sources or near feeding areas.

“Unfortunately we can’t control the weather, but we can use current conditions to our advantage and put a dent in local feral pig populations.”

Local Land Services biosecurity staff can assist landholders with technical advice on best practice control methods, including trap design and set up, and where appropriate the supply of poison.

To find out more about feral pig control, contact your nearest Local Land Services office, call 1300 795 299 or visit www.lls.nsw.gov.au

Media contact: Rod Campbell 0428 058 549

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