Grey nomads have been asked to help limit the damage caused by the million-plus feral camels occupying the Outback by reporting all sightings of the feral creatures.
CamelScan has been developed by a number of groups including the Invasive Animals CRC and the NSW Department of Primary Industries, and is part of the FeralScan program being rolled out across the country to help management of feral animals. The other species to be monitored include rabbits, foxes, myna birds, wild dogs and feral pigs.
“Australians are great travellers and we are confident that if rangeland landholders, four-wheel-drive enthusiasts, grey nomads, outback workers and other travellers record feral camel sightings and other data within the site, our body of knowledge and intelligence will grow quickly,” said Jan Ferguson, from the Australian Feral Camel Management Project. “With estimates of more than one million feral camels spread across over 3 million square kilometres and four states and territories, and an annual damage bill of over $10 million, we need community support to track and monitor significant populations and sites being damaged.”
The Australian Feral Camel Management Project is attempting to address the urgent need to significantly reduce feral camel density to lessen their impacts in remote Australia on biodiversity, wetlands, waterholes and other sites of cultural value to Aboriginal people, infrastructure (fences, houses, cars) and personal safety.
Grey nomads can report sightings of the feral beasts at CamelScan www.feralscan.org.au/camelscan. Reported information will be collated and used to prevent future camel damage.