This project will critically assess populations of pigs and deer across the Otways; identify regions where management is necessary to preserve EPBC list fauna and flora and vital assets such as water catchments; and develop a strategy to mitigate the impact of pigs and deer across the Otways.
Targeted research to establish baseline project data and define critical habitat will establish where feral pigs and deer pose the greatest threat to natural and cultural heritage. The project will develop early detection protocols using eDNA and establishment of long-term camera monitoring of feral pig and deer within critical habitat areas and public health assets.
In collaboration with Landcare project partners, three workshops will be delivered, focusing on the ecological and agricultural impacts of pigs and deer, effective management techniques and the use of FeralScan. These annual workshops will be delivered to both Community and Land Management agencies.
GPS data loggers will be deployed each year on feral pigs across separate pig populations in the Otways to allow understanding of the resources pigs are utilising throughout the year across different sub-regions and informing the structure of pig-control programs. A remote camera grid system will be optimised to ensure adequate detection of enough individual animals to confidently measure abundance.
Localised eradication of pig populations will be targeted through integrated pest management utilising the HogEye camera and trap system and data coming directly from a Judas pig program.
The project will coordinate and direct community-led pest control efforts and develop networks of Prime Safe registered shooters across the Otways. Land management agency staff will be trained in effective feral pig and deer control techniques.
A state-wide network to share knowledge about feral pig and deer management will be created.
Feral pig and deer eradication to protect native species in the Otway Ranges, Bells Beach (Ironbark Basin) and Great Ocean Road hinterland
Fox & Cat Management
Small Mammal Conservation
Frequently Asked Questions:
What is the Australian Government’s Wild Otways Initiative?
The Australian Government’s Wild Otway initiative is a three-year $6m commitment towards threatened species management and pest animal control in the greater Otway’s region. The Initiative includes the delivery of a broad and inclusive environmental community grants program and five commissioned sub-projects, which include pig and deer eradication, fox and cat management, Phytophthora (a plant pathogen) management, small mammal conservation and rewilding in the Otways.
How do I find out more?
Where is the Initiative being delivered?
The project area for the initiative covers the area from Jan Juc/Bells Beach to Peterborough, and the Great Otway National Park and hinterlands (Otways Region) in South West Victoria.
How long does the Initiative go for?
The initiative will be delivered in the Greater Otways region of Victoria over the next three years to June 2023.
This project is support by the Corangamite CMA, through funding from the Australian Government’s Environment Restoration Fund. This project will run until 2023.