Feral an­i­mal con­trol saves pos­sums

Albany Extra - - News - Saskia Adysti

A feral an­i­mal man­age­ment work­shop to min­imise the de­cline of crit­i­cally en­dan­gered western ring­tail pos­sum in Al­bany will be held at Tor­bay Hall on Satur­day, Au­gust 25.

Tor­bay Catch­ment con­ser­va­tion group is or­gan­is­ing a work­shop for lo­cal landown­ers after a re­cent survey re­vealed over 100 western ring­tail pos­sums found in the Tor­bay Catch­ment area.

Group pro­ject of­fi­cer Wendy Cof­fey said feral cats, com­bined with habi­tat degra­da­tion, was the most likely cause of western ring­tail pos­sum pop­u­la­tion de­cline.

“Feral an­i­mal con­trol needs to be on­go­ing and sus­tained and I can prove this works with ev­i­dence from our own prop­erty in Elleker,” she said.

“After 16 years of feral con­trol us­ing shoot­ing, trap­ping and strate­gic bait­ing, we have bandi­coots, a large va­ri­ety of bird species, frogs and rep­tiles.

“We also found nine en­dan­gered western ring­tail pos­sums and two brush­tail pos­sums in the area dur­ing a re­cent UWA survey.”

The group will be hold­ing a Feral An­i­mal Man­age­ment Work­shop with Mike Butcher, of An­i­mal Pest Man­age­ment Ser­vices.

Mr Butcher was awarded the 2014 Aus­tralasian Wildlife Man­age­ment So­ci­ety Prac­ti­tion­ers Award for the man­age­ment of log­ger­head tur­tles at Gnar­aloo.

Mr Butcher will demon­strate Canid Pest Ejec­tor set-up, trap­ping set-up, best bait­ing prac­tice and changes in fox ages after con­trol pro­grams.

For more in­for­ma­tion about the work­shop, visit the Tor­bay Catch­ment group web­site.

Pic­tures: Shan­non Smith

Den­mark Cham­ber of Com­merce and In­dus­try pres­i­dent Stu­art Evans with Great South­ern Gram­mar’s Ju­lia Bairstow.

Willem Coet­zee, Codey Bax­ter and Taj Bentink, all 17.

Quin Ablett, Gabriel Fin­lay and Matthew For­rest, all 14.

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