Macleay Valley Feral Pig Management Program
23 February 2015
Biosecurity Officers from North Coast Local Land Services are continuing to receive reports of feral pig activity in areas of the upper Macleay Valley. Historically, reports of feral pig activity were isolated in the region with the most activity reported in the Maria River area of the lower Macleay catchment. Increasing landholder reports of sightings and feral pig impacts to crops, soils and river flats indicate that these pest animals have spread to a wider extent in the upper Macleay.
Feral pigs are well known to impact soils, crops, fencing, livestock, native vegetation and endangered wildlife. They are a known vector for the spread of invasive weeds including the tropical soda apple, an invasive weed of increasing concern in the Macleay Catchment.
Senior Biosecurity Officer, Mick Thorman said "It is a timely reminder to Macleay landholders that feral pigs are well known to carry and transmit serious zoonotic diseases (transferable from animals to humans) including leptospirosis and swine brucellosis."
He continued, "It is our priority to reduce feral pig numbers overall but through our trapping programs we also hope to prevent emerging populations taking hold in areas such as the Upper Macleay."
"Within this Program we will conduct testing on animals trapped to determine the local prevalence of leptospirosis and Brucella suis within the wild pig population, information that can inform local preparedness for animal disease emergency management." he said.
With a range of trapping and baiting programs available across the North Coast region, North Coast Local Land Services have built capacity to monitor and trap feral pigs in the Macleay Valley and particularly the Upper Macleay.
Hugo Marree, Land Services Officer said "Landholders and managers that are observing feral pig activity throughout the Macleay region and are prepared to participate in this Program should contact us for assistance"
"Our capacity to co-ordinate control efforts with land managers' affected by feral pigs is our best chance to control emerging populations and minimise ongoing agricultural and environmental impacts along with potential risk to livestock and human health in the Macleay Valley." he said.
North Coast Local Land Services is asking landholders to become involved with trapping operations and participating landholders are assured of confidentiality within this Program. For more information and to report feral pig activity please call North Coast Local Land Services on 6653 6700.
This Program is made possible through the Australian Government Caring for Our Country funding and the NSW Government Catchment Action funding.
Photo Captions: Wild pigs identified by surveillance cameras.
Media Contact: Mick Thorman, Senior Biosecurity Officer 0429 449 375
Hugo Marree, Local Land Services Officer 6563 6707