Wild Dog Exclusion Fencing Forum hailed as a success
24 July 2018
Councils, State Government agencies and rural stakeholders are joining forces to tackle the wild dog problem in the south-west.
Ten councils from across the west, south-west and south Queensland were represented at the two-day Wild Dog Forum which was hosted by the Balonne Shire Council, Queensland Treasury Corporation and McCullough Robertson Lawyers at St George.
Balonne Shire Mayor Richard Marsh said there had been great discussion, input and presentations which helped delegates understand the direction in which to go.
“We didn’t want this to be a talk fest and wanted to ensure we have some actions to move forward with to help address wild dogs in our regions,” he said.
“One of the main points to come across was the need for data to help underpin our business case for more fencing.
“One of our presenters noted there was a gap in the data available to show how increasing dog numbers and fewer exclusion fences had impacted on regional Gross Domestic Product value and how a change in industry from sheep to cattle has impacted regional economies.
“Sourcing this data will be our first priority and from there we can put together a comprehensive business case which can be used as a region or by individual councils.”
Cr Marsh said wild dogs had become more prevalent after the fencing that was once around properties in the 1960s had deteriorated or been removed.
“When I was growing up on our property we had a 2m fence around the boundary and I never saw a dog, there were plenty of kangaroos and our stock were protected,” he said.
“Once those fences disappeared wild dogs became a big issue, leaving landholders no choice but to leave sheep and go into other stock.
“If we are able to provide some certainty to those regions who want to bring sheep back into their economy then we need to address the burgeoning wild dog population.
“Sheep production requires more people, more people will boost town populations and this in turn will boost economic growth.”