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New wild dog warrior

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Bob GarnantCountryman

WA’s newly appointed wild dog co-ordinator Meja Aldrich, is determined to wage war on the debilitating problem of predatory attacks from livestock producers’ worst enemy — wild dogs.

Ms Aldrich will not be alone in her approach; she is supported and advised by a Project Advisory Group and backed by the National Wild Dog Facilitator and a network of Invasive Animals CRC staff and will be in close consultation with the biosecurity staff of the Department of Food and Agriculture WA.

Funded by Australian Wool Innovation, Ms Aldrich is contracted for three years in which time her role is to facilitate collaboration between landholders with other key stakeholders, locally and across shires.

She will also co-ordinate best practice, on-ground wild dog control activities.

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Ms Aldrich will be based at Mingenew and will initially focus on the northern agricultural region and the adjacent pastoral region across the State barrier fence.

AWI on-farm project manager Ian Evans said woolgrowers recognised the vital need for all land managers to work together on wild dog control across the vast distances in WA.

“However, growers don’t have the relationship with distant land managers or the time required to get everyone working together on the dog problem,” he said.

“Nor do they necessarily have all the skills or resources to combat dogs.

“Meja is just the right person to get landholders together locally and across shires.”

Ms Aldrich comes from a good understanding of livestock production, having worked as a senior station hand on cattle stations in the Barkly, Pilbara and Goldfields.

“I understand how damaging predatory behaviour can be for farm operations and industries,” she said.

“I place great significance in clear communications with producers and others in the livestock industry and recognise the importance of strong relationships.”

For more information contact Ms Aldrich on 0417 622 780 or at meja.aldrich@wool.com.

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