Feral pigs are a huge environmental issue with 1900 destroyed in one 21-hour period recently in western NSW where they are in plague proportion.

Feral pigs plague Western NSW

While NSW politicians and the Greens quibble over hunting on public land, the central west of the state is suffering a plaque of feral pigs prompting calls for more control, while providing an opportunity for licenced shooters to get the big calibre fire stick out of the gun safe.

According to the Livestock Health and Pest Authorities, large areas of western and central NSW are experiencing significant increases in wild pig numbers, and they are reminding landholders about controlling these pest animals.

An LHPA media release says that ideal breeding conditions over the past few years have led to a large rise in numbers of feral pigs across the region including the Macquarie Marshes and cotton growing regions, and as they are a declared pest animal, landholders must implement effective measures to control them.

According to LHPA Ranger in Nyngan, Robynne Wells Budd, the region has experienced such a rise in numbers over the past few years, some land holders were struggling to stay on top of the pest.

“During one 21-hour period last month in the Macquarie Marshes, 1900 pigs were killed, which is just an astonishing number,” Ms Wells Budd said.

“There has also been big numbers of pigs in the cotton growing regions earlier this year. In one instance, 750 pigs were culled in just 10 hours from cotton fields in Trangie and Carinda, before harvest could commence.”

Ms Wells Budd said in some instances she had seen cotton damage of up to 75 per cent of the crop as a result of pig infiltration.

“In most situations, these pigs are shot on properties to support extensive baiting and trapping programs as a first response to the issue.

“However, the influx of the pest animals has sometimes been too much for the landholder to manage on their own. In these instances, shooting has taken place where the ground work alone has not been effective,” she added.

“This is a huge issue, which I believe will only continue to get worse while environmental conditions remain as they are.”




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Justin Law