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Fox baiting sign

Baiting program expands in fight against foxes

News Article Date: 
Tuesday, 27 April 2021
The Warrnambool City Council is expanding its fox baiting program to help better protect native wildlife, including the Little Penguin Colony on Middle Island.
In addition to the Council managed land west of the Warrnambool Sewage Treatment Plant, bait will be laid in areas of Lake Pertobe, Pickering Point and behind the skate park.
The baiting program will run from April 30 until June 23, 2021. The baited areas will be closed to dogs and other pets (including dogs on leads), during and up to four weeks after the fox baiting program.
Multiple warning signs have been erected at each location.
Warrnambool City Council Director City Infrastructure David Leahy said that after introducing fox baiting last year, Council’s 2021 program would move to target more known fox “hotspots”.
“It’s highly unlikely that the threat of foxes will ever be completely eliminated, but it is important that we take steps to try and reduce their impact,” he said.
“Specially trained Border Collies helped to map fox activity in the precinct, and this data is being used to help determine the distribution of bait.
“Looking specifically at the Middle Island penguin colony, this approach will stop as many foxes as possible before they reach Stringray Bay, with the highly effective Maremma dogs forming the last line of defence.
“Just as importantly, baiting will help to protect the native animals and birds who live in our foreshore area that are not guarded by Maremmas.”
Council officers will use para-aminopropiophenone (commonly called PAPP) in the baiting area. PAPP is a meat-based bait which targets foraging carnivorous animals.
“As well as being considered more humane than other baits, one of the big advantages of PAPP is that an antidote can be administered should a non-target animal eat any bait,” Mr Leahy said.
“If you believe your pet has eaten poison bait, it needs urgent veterinary intervention. While an antidote exists, the window to administer it is small.
“Bait will be buried away from paths and its placement will be mapped to make sure that none is left behind after the program finishes.”
Vet clinics in Warrnambool that hold the antidote include:
The Vet Group, 59 Mortlake Road Warrnambool – Phone 5561 6911
The Warrnambool Veterinary Clinic, 514 Raglan Parade – Phone 5559 0222
If members of the public encounter a dead fox within the baiting areas, they are asked to contact Council on 5559 4800.

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