We aim to foster a prosperous, vibrant community for present and future generations within the Oyster Harbour Catchment through natural resource management.
Oyster Harbour catchment covers 3,000 square kilometers and stretches from Albany in the south to Tenterden in the north. It contains some of the Great Southern's best natural assets.
As an organisation we coordinate many natural resource management projects: increasing awareness, encouraging best practices for all land uses, carry out landscape scale on-ground works and collaborate with others through out the community.
Please take 5 minutes to complete this survey. All responses and information gathered are anonymous.
The purpose of this is to gain a better understanding of cats in society and the environment and cats behaviour and owners management in the City of Albany and the Cranbrook, Denmark, and Plantagenet Shires. This information will be used to inform us about the community and the cat’s needs to adopt the best cat management.
In Australia, feral animals typically have few natural predators or fatal diseases and generally have high reproductive rates. As a result, their populations have not naturally diminished and multiply rapidly if conditions are favourable. Feral animals impact on native species and agriculture by predation, competition for food and shelter, destroying habitat, increase erosion, and by spreading diseases. Local volunteer shooter such as Patrick and property owners that facilitate them. They not only protect our unique native animals and overall ecology but also local farmers productivity. This takes time and costs them personally in resources with little compensation/ broader community recognition.
Patrick: "The farmers are very appreciative and willing to host me on their farms. I don’t hear from the town folk nor do I need too. Everyone’s just got to play their part and this is mine."
OHCG: What impact have you had?
Patrick: "Last year (2019) was the first year I started counting foxes killed (besides doing competition). Mostly I just shoot in the immediate area consisting of 5 odd properties (with explicit permission). Despite the small catchment area still managed to control 187 foxes. Piggeries are a goldmine for foxes, they are everywhere due to the constant food source. Doesn’t matter if I have just shot there the previous night, I will still find some more."
"I use a thermal scope which is much more effective than a spotlight and I can knock out a lot more of the resident population which limits the greatest impact on the environment/livestock rather than only getting the opportunistic roamers. For example, I help control foxes on the Yellinup piggery, and though I haven’t managed to permanently get rid of their foxes since I can only manage to do a quarter of the property when I visit, I end up getting 10-12 a night in that one spot. The manager said the months in which I was shooting they got the best yields. Ended up protecting farmers productivity and the surrounding environment."
"Just on my property a lot of pygmy possums have come back and even some brush-tailed phascogales but I think that was more from getting rid of a couple of feral cats. Foxes tend to be more opportunistic eaters of the weak and young. Rather target easy prey such as birds and livestock then hunt down the harder to catch native mammals."
If you wish to do your part and think like Patrick, then protecting farmland and the environment might be your forte.Please do so (with owners permission) you have OHCG's appreciation. Also if you'd like to map/record your effort got to https://feralscan.org.au/default.aspx It's easy to run via their app while out and about with support available and confidential.
Managing Pests Controlling invasive species on your property not only satisfies your legal obligations but limits their imposed risk to your property and livestock/crop as well as potential fuel loads.
See feralscan.org.au for pest animal control information and help map control effort
Livestock Welfare Nothing tests your ability to assess your property stocking rate capacity than a hot summer. Assess if you have enough feed/water before the season hits. Do you have an excess? Should you buy more stock. Is it limited? Should you destock now or is it going to be worth carting water/buying feed? Especially as under the BAM act their welfare is your legal responsibility.