COMMITTEE & MEETINGS
The Flinders Shire Council has helped form a Wild Dog Advisory Group that consists of Council staff, State Government Department staff and rural property owners. The Wild Dog Advisory Group will provide advice to Council and help coordinate control measures throughout the Shire. Four meetings are held a year in the months February, May, August & November, with one meeting a year being open to all graziers in the Shire. Minutes are taken and distributed to committee members prior to the next meeting.
Meetings are held to discuss the following topics:
· Future / prior baiting campaign and statistics
· Council's Wild Dog Scalp Bounty (currently at $40)
· Various Control Methods
· Available funding
· Research updates
· Investigations/discussion of ways to improve Council's Wild Dog Control Programme
· Council's Wild Dog Control Measures Policy
· Review of Wild Dog Levy (annually)
· Review of Budget (annually)
The Advisory Group is currently working with Greg Mifsud the National Wild Dog Facilitator based in Toowoomba and Brett Carlsson, Wild Dog Coordinator for Agforce Queensland to gather as much information as possible on wild dog activity within the Shire through consultation with landholders which will then be utilised to develop a strategic management plan for the Shire. The plan will review the current wild dog control programme and using the information provided by graziers will look to incorporate a range of best practice methods for wild dog control in order to minimise impacts on livestock production within the Shire.
The type of information being gathered from graziers includes where stock attacks have historically occurred and where they are occurring now, wild dog movement corridors, wild dog breeding sites and where and what type of control was used in the past and being used now to manage wild dogs. The information gathered has been incorporated onto maps in order to get a better picture of the wild dog issue in relation to current control.
The Wild Dog Advisory Group is aware that the impacts of wild dogs, effect all residents in the Shire and is a whole community issue. The loss in production through wild dog attacks affects the prosperity of the Shire and this has many downstream impacts on things such as employment and the economy. Council and the Wild Dog Advisory Group are working together to minimise the impacts of wild dogs on landholders in the Shire, however we require landholders participation and assistance to achieve this goal. The development of a strategic management plan for the control of wild dogs is seen as a way forward on this issue and we strongly urge all landholders in Flinders Shire to participate in Council's Baiting Campaign to control wild dogs in the Shire.
POLICIES & LEVY
In 2006 Council adopted the Wild Dog Control Measures Policy after the Wild Dog Levy was introduced. The Special Rate is levied on rural properties classified as Category 3 being all land within the Shire which the Valuer-General has identified as Rural Land. The Council is of the opinion that all rural properties will derive a benefit from the Wild Dog Levy. The rate is levied on the basis of a rate in the dollar on the Unimproved Capital Value of each property. The Special Rate will be utilised for the control of wild dogs on rural properties throughout the Shire and will partly fund the costs of undertaking co-ordinated baitings including the Admin Technical Officer's time, plant and equipment, aeroplane hire and payment of bounties. The current Wild Dog Control charge is 0.0002490 cents in the dollar on the Unimproved Capital Value of each property with the minimum charge being $162.50 per assessment
Flinders Shire Council organises two baits a year around April/May and October/November for all graziers in the Flinders Shire to participate in. A 1080 Baiting Flyer is sent out to all residents within the Shire stating the date, time and baiting venues for the next bait. Currently graziers are to supply their own meat cut into 250g pieces, the Rural Lands Officer will spray and roll the meat with 1080 at the designated baiting venues and Council supplies an aeroplane to fly the meat out or graziers can choose to distribute the baits themself. If graziers wish to supply meat for pig baits, they are to be cut into 500g pieces and the RLO will inject with 1080. All meat is to be dried out prior to the baiting.
De-K9 manufactured baits are available for purchase at $240 for a bucket of 200. Council offers the opportunity to all graziers to bait anytime in the year. Please refer to Council's Wild Dog Control Measures Policy for conditions regarding this. Council offers a Wild Dog Scalp Bounty of $40 to anyone in the Shire who brings in a salted wild dog scalp. Scalps are to be bagged individually and delivered to the Stores Office at the Council Depot on Saleyards Road.