SHARED PROBLEM, SHARED SOLUTIONS

State-wide review of pest animal management (Final Report, August 2016)

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Executive Summary

Introduced pest animals are pervasive across NSW. Despite efforts to manage them, foxes, feral cats and carp are now widespread across the entire state, and populations of wild dogs, deer, feral goats, rabbits and feral pigs continue to increase in numbers and geographic distribution.
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Recommendations

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Chapter 1

A review of pest animal management

The Premier of NSW has requested that the Natural Resources Commission (the Commission) undertake an independent, state-wide review of pest animal management in NSW. The review draws on over 100 research publications, close to 600 submissions and interviews with public and private stakeholders.
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Chapter 2

Pest animals, impacts and risk

A wide range of factors contributed to the establishment of many pest species in Australia, and an equally wide range of communities, stakeholders, land managers and administrators are affected by these animals’ feeding, predatory or nesting habits. Even as effective control measures are delivering notable successes with some species, new risks continue to emerge.
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Chapter 3

Strengthened governance and planning

Successfully reducing the impacts of pest animals in NSW requires an integrated approach to
planning and management across tenures.
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Chapter 4

Better risk management

Future threats to agricultural production and our environment from pest animals have the potential to far outweigh their current economic impacts.
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Chapter 5

Promote participation

Local communities are best placed to manage widespread pest animals. They can apply local knowledge, organise their own resources and implement programs tailored to local needs (Martin et al., 2016; Queensland Government Department of Agriculture Fisheries and Forestry, 2015; Sobels et al., 2001). Further, if programs are owned by the community, they can outlast institutional or other changes.
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Chapter 6

Treat pests as pests

Wild deer and feral cats are not currently classified as pests in NSW, yet they pose extreme risks. NSW in its management of both deer and cats is out of step with the majority of other states and territories, and the Australian Government.
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Chapter 7

Smarter management practices

Whereas the previous chapter discussed changes to the regulatory framework to better manage two significant pest species, this chapter focuses on improving management strategically by building on merging breakthroughs in research and seizing existing opportunities for better control options.
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Chapter 8

Improved knowledge base

As this review reveals, effective pest animal management is a complex, time-consuming and costly endeavour. In order to be cost-effective, it requires the best available science supported by an ongoing pool of capable and resourced researchers.
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Chapter 9

Targeted funding

NSW landholders, industry and government expend signifi cant resources on pest animal management, accounting for around 30 percent of funds spent nationally (McLeod, 2016).
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Chapter 10

Transitioning to new arrangements

The modernisation of the NSW biosecurity arrangements, institutions, strategy and regulations is an important task. The NSW Biosecurity Act 2015 represents a once in a generation opportunity for a step change improvement in current practice.
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Appendices

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