The Australian Government’s pest and weed management assistance measure of $15 million in 2015-16 and $10 million over the forward years (2016–17 to 2018–19) will help to:
- reduce grazing pressure from pest animals
- reduce predation from pest animals like wild dogs through culling and exclusion
- reduce weed incursions.
Outcomes will include increased stock survival, improved groundcover and critical stock forage, and improved landscape health in drought affected areas.
There will be flow-on benefits to local communities through the creation of additional employment opportunities. The economic activity will boost local agricultural suppliers and support services.
The measure builds on the Australian Government’s contribution of $8.8 million from 2013–14 to 2014–15 to help reduce the impact of pest and feral animals in drought-affected areas of New South Wales, Queensland, South Australia and Western Australia.
This new funding will be used to supplement state pest and weed management activities.
Funding for 2015–16 will have an initial focus in New South Wales and Queensland.
Projects that have financial buy-in from the states, and cluster management projects where a group of landholders work together, will receive the greatest consideration.
The department will be working with state agencies over the coming weeks to explore priority activities.
Funds administration will occur at the state level. State governments will work with natural resource management groups, local shires and others as is appropriate to determine pest animal management projects. State agencies.
Frequently asked questions
Why is it important?
During drought, pest and feral animals and weeds add further pressure to pastures and groundcover at a time when feed is critical for remaining livestock. Wild dogs, feral pigs and foxes tend to prey on grazing animals that are concentrated around fewer watering points. This funding will help reduce the impact pest and feral animals have on drought-affected farmers and help reduce the incursion of weeds.
How can farmers access the funding?
The funds will be delivered through state and territory governments to local organisations in affected areas. These organisations will work with local farmers.
Is it only available in Queensland and New South Wales, or is it available across all states?
The funding will have an initial focus in New South Wales and Queensland but will be made available in all states experiencing severe rainfall deficiencies.
What can the funding be used for?
Funding may be used for activities to manage pest and feral animal impacts and the control of agricultural weeds, for example landscape-scale baiting programmes to control wild dogs and feral pigs, and weed management programmes.
Funding for the lethal control of non-native pest animals will depend on the local circumstances. Some pest animals (e.g. rabbits) may be best controlled on an individual property basis. Control of predatory pest animals is usually best undertaken through coordinated landscape scale actions, determined in consultation with landowners and relevant agencies and councils.
When will the funding be available?
Further information about the drought-related pest and weed management programmes to be delivered in 2015–16, including how to apply for funding, will be available from relevant state government delivery agencies in due course.
How much funding can my organisation apply for?
This will be determined by state and territory government delivery agencies.