The eradication of introduced wildlife, even on a local scale, is not often a feasible prospect. Using a mix of volunteer recreational hunters and paid wildlife controllers, Parks Victoria are close to doing just that at the Mt Mittamatite Regional Park.
For a number of years, volunteer hunters under the auspices of the Sporting Shooters Association of Australia (Vic) have removed the majority of the goats from the Park. Parks Victoria are now planning a one-day aerial control program which could, if all goes well, remove all of the remaining goats.
In order to achieve this, the Mt Mittamatite Regional Park will be closed for one day in October (between October 7 and 25, weather dependent).
Eradication can only be achieved when
- the rate of removal exceeds the rate of increase at all population densities,
- immigration is zero and
- all reproductive animals can be put at risk
Feral goats can have a negative impact on native vegetation through overgrazing, physical damage to plants and soil degradation (erosion). They compete with native fauna for food, water and shelter.
Parks Victoria is using highly skilled professionals to undertake this aerial goat control program, which will be thoroughly planned and carried out under strict conditions designed to ensure safe, effective and humane practices at all times.
Parks Victoria have provided a map of the proposed closure.