Fox baiting urged
Spring is a very effective time for fox baiting, because vixens are in dens with reliant cubs, according to Red Card for Rabbits and Foxes program co-ordinator Rowan Hegglun.
"Fox food demands are high due to the raising of cubs and the inexperience of the very young animals," Mr Hegglun said.
"While farmers are busy with harvest, they also notice foxes and fox dens in paddocks, particularly in sandy areas - there is a great opportunity to place a fox bait directly down the fox hole and remove these destructive pests from our landscape.
"The most influential factor regarding pest control is the ability of the community to take a co-ordinated approach, so that widespread baiting occurs at the same time."
Fox cubs are typically born in September and are generally weaned at six to eight weeks of age, when they start to surface from the den to source their own food.
They generally abandon the dens at around 10 weeks of age and remain in a juvenile social group until they seek their own territory at around five months of age.
Their lack of experience makes them vulnerable to human control efforts such as 1080 baiting during this time.
"A number of certified commercial soft-bait products are available to landowners, and it is important to know what active ingredient is being used and how attractive the baits are to the target species, as well as characteristics like water-fastness in rain events," Mr Hegglun said.
Landowners gain accreditation to lay 1080 baits on their properties through a simple online application process that provides information and training.
Authorisation vouchers are then issued, which the landholder takes to their regular ag-supply shop and can purchase baits.
For information on 1080 accreditation, go to www.agric.wa.gov.au .
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