Outfoxing the Ferals

Outfoxing the Ferals

Gavern House from Alpha Pest Control, our new fox baiting contractor, met with participating landowners to discuss methods and strategy this spring. Eight private properties are currently taking advantage of his services. In addition, the City of Albany has given permission to bait on all three of the reserves on the peninsula. Gavern recommends baiting in late spring when fox cubs are starting to disperse, and then again in six months, when the females are going into oestrum and fattening up for the mating season.

Gavern returned to lay baits in late November. Two NCI members accompanied him on a full day out in the bush. 1080-laced eggs were buried on all eight properties, supplemented with tethered dry meat baits on properties without domestic animals. A detailed map displaying the location of each bait along with its GPS coordinates has been provided to each landowner. Baits will be checked for uptake and that data recorded.

Since the start of the WICC sponsored baiting program on the Nullaki in late 2018, trail cameras monitored by NCI have documented decreasing fox numbers. The success of WICC’s recent State NRM grant means additional trail cameras will soon be installed. A more formal monitoring program using best practice scientific methods is currently under development with ecologists from WA Parks and Wildlife and South Coast NRM. Our goal of removing feral foxes from the Nullaki Peninsula is making great strides forward!