A FERAL pig bait currently under development has achieved a 90 percent knockdown rate in its first pastoral trial, Meat and Livestock Australia (MLA) says.
The bait known as HOG-GONE, development of which has been supported by the MLA, has proven a quick and humane weapon against feral pigs in trial work on a northern NSW pastoral property.
Dr Steven Lapidge of the Invasive Animals Cooperative Research Centre said a further six trials, in different pig habitats and using different delivery techniques including aerial and ground, would be required before the bait could be registered.
“We’re hoping to get to registration by the end of next year,” Dr Lapidge said.
The product could become commercially available one to two years after registration and Dr Lapidge hopes the bait would be manufactured and made available from Animal Control Technologies Australia at a similar price to PIGOUT, which was also supported by MLA.
Producers will then have the choice of using PIGOUT, containing sodium fluoroacetate (1080), or HOG-GONE, containing sodium nitrite for their feral pig control programs.
Brett Schiffmann, manager of ‘Glenrock’ the northern NSW pastoral property on which trials have been conducted, said feral pigs have been a constant problem on the 30,351 hectare property north east of Scone, NSW.
Mr Schiffmann has had to rely on aerial and ground shooting of pigs and said it was hard to find too many negatives from the HOG-GONE trials.
“It would be a really good thing to have access to baits like these,” he said.
“From the tests, they seem effective, they’re humane and there could be an antidote for working dogs which is the best thing about it.
“The biggest thing the pig does is carry the leptospirosis virus which can cause abortions and fertility problems in cattle.”
Both PIGOUT and HOG-GONE were developed in the wake of the 2003 Feral Pig Action Agenda, which identified the need for greater feral pig control.
Sign up for our newsletter to stay up to date.