Rabbit control exceeds targets in Mallee parks

Thursday 25 June, 2020

Three decades of work to control the impact of rabbits in the semi-arid deserts of North West Victoria is continuing, with a recent survey showing excellent results. 

Rabbit populations are measured by how many rabbits are seen each kilometre when surveying with a spotlight at night. 

There is now less than one rabbit per spotlight kilometre over 92% of the parks surveyed.  This is the seventh year in a row that the target of one rabbit per spotlight kilometre over 80% of the parks has been exceeded.

These positive figures are the result of Traditional Owners and Parks Victoria working together to ensure that rabbit numbers are controlled in a way that doesn’t impact on the significant cultural heritage of Mallee parks. 

Current work includes baiting, fumigation and mechanical ripping of rabbit warrens in suitable areas. 

The control work is part of a larger project known as Mallee Bounceback Rabbits covering 335,000 hectares. This includes sections of Murray Sunset, Wyperfeld and Hattah-Kulkyne national parks; Hattah and Cowangie state forests; Lake Albacutya Park, and areas of state forest and reserves in the Patchewollock area

This project is funded through the Victorian Government’s Weeds and Pests on Public Land and Biodiversity Response Planning programs.  The programs are working to achieve the vision of Biodiversity 2037, Victoria’s plan to stop the decline of our native plants and animals and ensure our natural environment is healthy and resilient.

Ongoing operations are carried out under strict conditions designed to ensure safe, effective, and humane practices. Operations are planned to ensure they meet requirements under public health measures to slow the spread of coronavirus (COVID-19). Including strict physical distancing, hygiene and travel management of ground crews, and hygiene control.

Quotes attributable to Brendan Rodgers, Total Grazing Management Coordinator, Parks Victoria


“This work is a key component of Parks Victoria’s Total Grazing Management Plan, which aims to reduce the impacts of grazers - such as rabbits, goats and kangaroos - restore key habitat and protect Aboriginal sites and artefacts.

This program is crucial to restoring habitat and improving overall landscape health.”

Media enquiries

Gareth Rees

Mobile: 0417 067 706

gareth.rees@parks.vic.gov.au

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