Conservation program tackles feral goats near Hamilton
Tuesday 24 March, 2020
Program to protect environment at Mount Napier State Park
Parks Victoria will be undertaking a conservation program during Autumn to protect the unique natural features of Mount Napier State Park, near Hamilton.
A population of feral goats is damaging habitat of ground-dwelling mammals and vegetation in the state park, including unique fern communities within the Byaduk caves, which were formed by lava flows from Mount Napier thousands of years ago.
Feral goats are pest animals which have a negative impact on native vegetation through overgrazing, physical damage to plants, erosion and spreading weeds. They compete with native fauna for food, water and shelter.
This program will help vegetation to re-establish in the areas where goats have cleared it, reducing the threat of erosion.
Parks Victoria regularly undertakes dedicated conservation programs, designed to contribute to habitat restoration or predator management across the park network. These programs include activities such as monitoring of grazer and plant populations, revegetation, spraying, controlled burning, and animal control programs. These programs are crucial to restoring habitat and improving overall landscape health.
Parks Victoria is using highly skilled professional shooters to undertake the program, which will be thoroughly planned and carried out under strict conditions designed to ensure safe, effective and humane practices.
On occasions, public access to the state park will restricted, with warning signs in place at all entry points.
This project has been funded by the Victorian Government’s Biodiversity Response Planning program and is helping to ensure that Victoria’s biodiversity is healthy, valued and actively cared for. This project is aligned with the implementation of Protecting Victoria’s Environment - Biodiversity 2037.
An animation has been created to simplify the complex story of feral goats in Victoria’s natural environment: https://youtu.be/43tWUtt-wcM
Feral animal control programs are just one way Parks Victoria takes care of native ecosystems, plants and wildlife – find out more at: www.parks.vic.gov.au/feralanimals
Quotes attributed to Don Tumney, Area Chief Ranger–Parks Victoria:
“Victoria's parks are home to more than 4,300 native plants and 948 native animal species, which Parks Victoria plays a vital role in protecting.”
“We’ll be using GPS technology to help locate the pest animals, which have established themselves in the park after escaping from a goat farm some time ago.”