What are your thoughts on the revised policy on the management of wild dogs in South Australia?

We want to hear your feedback on the revised policy on the management of wild dogs in South Australia.

Read the revised Declared Animal Policy (Wild dogs and dingoes), the proposed changes and the Frequently Asked Questions and provide your feedback by commenting below.

Your feedback will be considered by PIRSA, NRM boards, and the Minister for Environment and Water and will inform the development of the final version of the policy.

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Belinda Whitten

22 Feb 2020

For generations the general public has been conditioned to consider dingoes/dingo hybrids ("wild dogs") as a threat. Yet science is showing us time and time again that our native apex predator plays a protective role for the many threatened plant and animal species we have. The proposed changes to SA legislation appear to be largely focused on mandating that all land holders must use poison baiting to ostensibly protect the sheep industry. In doing so, the proposed changes will remove the right for these land holders to choose in which way they will protect their stock and land. There are many other (more humane) methods used successfully in both Australia and around the world to protect sheep flocks from canine predators. Increasingly there are also farmers who are recognising the value dingoes can play on their land enabling them to farm economically and sustainably. Unfortunately poisons like 1080 pose an enormous risk to some of these alternatives which include the use of guardian dogs. As some of the other comments here highlight, the use of poisions is also in direct conflict with organic practices which are becoming increasingly valued and recognised.

The price of the proposed enforceable changes economically is likely to far exceed the cost of compensating farmers for the relatively minor (in terms of % of flock) stock losses experienced by dingoes. The cost to the biodiversity of our land and it's native animals will be far higher and dingoes can play an active role in protecting this. https://newsroom.unsw.edu.au/news/science-tech/dingo-fence-study-shows-dingo-extermination-leads-poorer-soil
The proposed changes in the policy to remove the references to dingo and replace with wild dog is also of great concern .
The persistence of government agencies in referring to dingoes as wild dogs when the science shows that they are a distinct species and that the vast majority of animals tested have at least a 50% and generally much higher % of dingo could be construed as either willfully ignorant or deliberately misleading. This research refers to NSW which is generally accepted to have higher hybridisation rates than SA and so the point is even more relevant for SA. https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=10218829774528948&set=gm.1348512171987446&type=3&theater&ifg=1
https://theconversation.com/dingoes-found-in-new-south-wales-but-were-killing-them-as-wild-dogs-126184

Finally, the proposed changes state "The revised policy also aims to maintain the ecological role of wild dogs and their role in Aboriginal culture, outside the Dog Fence." This could be interpreted as being highly offensive to Aboriginal people suggesting that dingoes only have a role to play in certain geographies. Colonial Australia has a long history of failing to recognise the connection to land of our first nations people and I am surprised and disappointed to see that yet again we are defining artificial boundaries where cultural connections 'may exist' and where they may not.

Thank you for creating an opportunity for public comment and I look forward to to the many comments made being used to constructively inform significant revision to the proposed policy.

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Robert McIntosh

21 Feb 2020

You are very misguided in your understanding of dingos and their contributions. Please read this letter from 24 scientific experts from many universities to our federal ministers for the environment and agriculture.
"We strongly emphasise the ecological importance of terrestrial apex predators in biodiversity resilience and ecosystem functioning. Dingoes are the sole non-human land-based top predator on the Australian mainland. Their importance to the ecological health and resilience of Australian ecosystems cannot be overstated, from regulating wild herbivore abundance (e.g. various kangaroo species), to reducing the impacts of feral mesopredators (cats, foxes) on native marsupials (Johnson & VanDerWal 2009; Wallach et al. 2010; Letnic et al. 2012; Letnic et al. 2013; Newsome et al. 2015; Morris & Letnic 2017). It would be hypothesised that continued dramatic reduction of dingo populations, by aerial baiting, will enable introduced mesopredators such as foxes and cats to exploit burnt areas unchecked, posing a high risk to threatened native species. The impacts of feral cats and red foxes are likely to be amplified in disturbed ecosystems, such as those burnt by bushfires. Indiscriminate and non-target specific lethal management should not be implemented if there is a risk to the persistence of threatened native fauna or ecosystem resilience."

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Natalie Anderson

21 Feb 2020

Baiting is cruel and inhumane. Please read https://wooleen.com.au/the-wooleen-way/ On how our apex predator the Dingo, protects and enriches land and is valued.
Do good, Cause no harm.

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Robyn Reichert

21 Feb 2020

CRUEL!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! How can you sleep at night knowing you are TORTURING and ANIMAL to DEATH???? How? This is obscene, humane . barbaric! Find a humane alternative, how cruel!

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Ngapera Williams

21 Feb 2020

Baiting is absolutely ludacris. 1080 kills all wildlife not only dogs. It poisons waterways. What are you thinking. Look at New Zealand and the loss of native flaura and fauna and the impact its had on the land. Dingos are misunderstood. They are NATIVE to Australia and they have a Spirit they are alive. Dont be murderers.

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Sally Johnson

21 Feb 2020

The Dingo is not a wild dog, it is a Dingo. Dropping bait not only kills the Dingo but it kills everything else in the slowest most agonizing way imaginable. The Dingo can take 32 hours to die screaming in pain. Then the eagles, and all carrion eating bird and animal eat his body and they too die the same terrible death. Any herbivore that eats one can also die. This is NOT an animal specific poison. Anyone who can drop this and turn a blind eye to the pain and suffering they have caused would have loved working in Auschwitz!
We are murdering our wildlife at a rate that makes us look like insane people. Believe me we share all this information world wide so everyone can know what a despicable country we live in. We should hang out heads in shame, between shooting pregnant mares from helicopters to slaughtering animals willynilly, Australian Governments are a disgrace and Sth Aust should NOT join in this horrific display of uncaring slaughter.

Sally Johnson > Sally Johnson

21 Feb 2020

Just an update on how this poison kills from Aussie Dingo Day on Facebook
Right now....everyday native wildlife and even pets are dying the most inhumane death....😪Because of 1080 poison!
Nothing is immune to 1080 although there are some species that are not as sensitive as others.
1080 is NOT a plant derivative - what they use for baiting is compound 1080 which is synthetically produced....

1080 only creates the illusion of an immediate solution, usually for short sighted economic gains....This poison is torture!
1080 (sodium monofluroacetate) is a cruel and indiscriminate poison used to remove unwanted populations of animals.
Banned in most countries, 1080 is still used liberally throughout Australia to control so called pest species, and reduce browsing damage caused by native animals on private land....

1080 is a slow killer....When ingested (usually through baited food) the animal suffers a prolonged and horrific death.
Herbivores take the longest to die up to 36 hours, while carnivores can take up to 21 hours before finally succumbing to final effects of the poison. The speed of death is dependent on the rate of the animals metabolism.

A slow and Horrific death:
Carnivorous animals such as Dingoes, dogs, foxes, and cats become very agitated, as they tremble, convulse and vomit.
The list of symptoms include:
Restlessness, increased hyperexcitability, incontinence or diarrhea, excessive salivation, abrupt bouts of vocalisation, and finally sudden bursts of violent activity. All affected animals then fall to the ground in teranic seizure, with hind limbs or all four limbs and sometimes the tail extended rigidly from their arched bodies. At all other times the front feet are clasped together, clenched or used to scratch frantically. This tonic phase is then followed by a clonic phase in which the animals lie and kick or "paddle" with the front legs and squeal, crawl around and bite at objects. During this phase the tongue and penis may be extruded, their eyes rolled back so that only the whites show and the teeth ground together. Their breathing is rapid but laboured, with some animals partly choking on their saliva. Then finally such individuals begin to relax, breathing more slowly and shallowly and lying quietly with the hind legs still extended but apparently semiparalysed....

From the above descriptions, it is without question that 1080 poison inflicts great pain and suffering on affected animals. Aside from the physical pain endured over the many hours before death, the terror, fear and anxiety felt by these animals is unimaginable....How can anyone inflict such a nightmare on any being?

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Mel Browning

21 Feb 2020

Dingoes, as Australia's native apex land predator, are a critical species providing ecosystem stability / resilience and thriving biodiversity, resulting in a win-win for farmers and wildlife. A 2017 UNSW study conducted on both sides of the dingo fence, concluded that on the south-side of the fence, where dingoes were few because of lethal control programs, kangaroo numbers were prolific and overgrazing resulted in the loss of smaller shrubs and grasses exposing soils and depleting nutrients. On the north-side, stable dingo populations kept the kangaroo populations in balance resulting in an abundance native grasses and shrubs, which not only preserved the health of the soil biota but provided habitat and predator cover for smaller threatened species. https://newsroom.unsw.edu.au/news/science-tech/dingo-fence-study-shows-dingo-extermination-leads-poorer-soil The most notable, large scale ecological restoration project ever undertaken over the past decade in Australia, is in the southern rangelands of WA, undertaken by pastoralist, David Pollock. In his book 'The Wooleen Way', David states: 'Without the dingo it seems unlikely to me that we'll ever recover the productivity of the landscape.' 'We used to have alot of foxes, but as the dingoes have reclaimed the rangelands, they rapidly disappeared.' 'Now, turtle tracks are a common sight after rain. The same is true for all ground-nesting birds and small animals: dingoes reduce the number of predators (foxes and cats), which makes it easier for prey to prosper.' https://www.centralstation.net.au/doggone-kangaroos/ The only winners in spreading poisons are pest control agencies and poison manufacturers. Kill off dingoes and bigger problems are created for farmers in the loss of productivity of the landscape from explosions in feral herbivores such as rabbits, feral pigs, feral goats as well as explosions in roo numbers. As top order predators, stable dingo populations fiercely defend their territories against roaming feral dogs and suppress breeding among subordinates. Kill dingoes and sheep farmers will experience greater numbers of foxes filling the niche. Government pest control agency personnel need to be retrained to assist farmers in transitioning towards coexistence with dingoes and non-lethal livestock protection strategies such as livestock guardian animals that have proven to be very successful even on sizable sheep stations such as Dunluce: http://www.dunluce.com.au/articles/maremmas.html The millions spent on maintaining the Dingo Fence and baiting programs needs to be redirected into directly compensating farmers for livestock losses and investing in effective non-lethal livestock protection strategies. The synthetically manufactured super toxin,1080 poison, is cruel and indiscriminate and negatively impacts on predator assemblages, killing dingoes and favouring destructive introduced foxes and feral cats. To say that 1080 poison is naturally occurring and native species are immune is a lie. Many native species uptake baits and the damaging effects of repeated non-lethal exposure are unknown. 1080 poison poses a risk to working dogs and it can remain toxic for many months in the carcasses of poisoned animals.

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Jake Gordon

20 Feb 2020

Absolutely disgusted about the continuing use of 1080 throughout Australia, this is not a humane for an animal to die. Australia tends to propel policies that just advocate for the killing of species left right and centre, it has been proven over and over again that by taking out the Apex predators in the ecological system it destroys the system, it allows the ability for mesopredators to dominate the area especially feral cats and foxes. That’s why we are seeing a huge reduction across many species throughout Australia. I am yet to understand how the government can continue to kill a huge variety of animals using 1080, just out recently the quokka in WA is struggling due to 1080, the indiscriminate baiting effects the ecosystem much worse than allowing the Apex predator to survive in the wild. The government can freely kill animals through 1080 baiting yet if someone went and took an animal from the wild to keep as a pet they will face the full force of the law. Absolutely atrocious, we are the only country in the world to label the native canine as a wild dog, America has wolves and coyotes but we call our unique canine a wild dog, absolutely ashamed to call Australia home and absolutely ashamed to call South Australia my birthplace,

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Graeme Finlayson

18 Feb 2020

I'm interested in the data you are using to draw the conclusion that "Wild dog populations and distributions have increased inside the Dog Fence in South Australia over the past two decades." As an ecologist who works in the region I am yet to see any robust survey data that investigates the distribution and abundance of wild dogs. I am aware that some of the information is based on interviewing landholders but to adequately assess population distribution and abundance would require intensive surveys with track surveys, camera monitoring and/or collaring of animals, which to my knowledge does not exist. I look forward to hearing from you regarding this as for any change to legislation around wild dog control, this data is critical.

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Chilli Laylor

11 Feb 2020

Why isn’t the individual farmer responsible for his or her stock if you have decided to farm sheep, shouldn’t the farmer be putting up appropriate fencing to say stop the necessity of littering the landscape with poisoned meat. When will the wildlife stop taking second place to the profits of others. Is it NRM natural resources management or FPA farmers protection agency. And what wild dogs the only thing running up and down the Birdsville track are domestic dogs - Irish Wolf hounds. And have you ever seen a 1080 sign on the Track? How will you stop the baits getting washed into waterways when there is. A rain event? If landholders can’t be trusted to put the signs out how can you in trust them to do the baiting by air responsibly - how’s that going to work for the organics ? Nothing organic about the meat coming of properties that use 1080 and are still using strychnine on carcass’s.

Government Agency

PIRSA Wild Dog Coordination Team > Chilli Laylor

17 Feb 2020

Hello Chilli
Thanks for your comments and perspective.
The definition of 'wild dogs' is all wild-living dogs including dingoes, domestic dogs living at large and their hybrids.
Under the Landscapes SA Act 2019 wild dogs are declared inside the Dog Fence and landholders have a responsibility to destroy them.
Landholders and managers must sign an Approval to Possess 1080 and PAPP Bait form when they collect baits from their local NRM officer. Non-compliance with mandatory instructions in these Directions for Use (including signage) is an offence under the Controlled Substances Act, 1984 and the Agricultural and Veterinary Products (Control of Use) Act, 2002. Further information on 1080 baiting can be obtained on the PIRSA website.
Under the Animal Welfare Act 1985 and Regulations, traps for wild dogs must be treated with a toxin (currently strychnine) to ensure a rapid death for any animal caught. The use of strychnine in any other way is illegal other than on traps for wild dogs.
To ensure organic sheep and cattle properties do not become safe havens for wild dogs, organic certifiers provide guidelines which outline how organic producers are permitted to use bait. Organic producers must ensure their property management plans include appropriate baiting procedures, which may involve allowing sufficient area for organic stock to be excluded from baiting activities.
Thank you again, your feedback will be considered in the review of the policy for wild dogs.
Heather Miller
Wild Dog Planning Coordinator

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Darren Alexander

11 Feb 2020

If you are serious about removing wild dogs, pigs, deer then there should be a bounty ie $5 each. I would approach gun clubs/ shops to promote the idea and pay shooters for every tail they bring in as proof.

Government Agency

Wild Dog Planning Officer > Darren Alexander

17 Feb 2020

Hi Darren
Reviews of past bounty schemes from Australia and around the world show they are an ineffective form of pest animal control and don’t guarantee a significant reduction in wild dog damage. Bounties need considerable supervision, and evidence from past bounty schemes has revealed a range of deceptive and fraudulent behaviours. For example, bounties could be collected from wild dogs that were shot outside the Dog Fence, where there are higher densities of wild dogs, which are not required to be destroyed.
Further information on bounties can be obtained at https://www.pestsmart.org.au/awms-position-statement-on-bounties/
Thank you for your input into the reviewed SA wild dog policy. Your feedback will be considered.
Heather Miller
Wild Dog Planning Coordinator

Sally Johnson > Darren Alexander

21 Feb 2020

How do you sleep at night knowing the pain you are causing

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