Efficacy of Feratox® Cyanide Pellets to Control Introduced Brushtail Possums on Middle Island

Efficacy of Feratox® Cyanide Pellets to Control Introduced Brushtail Possums on Middle Island

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Efficacy of Feratox® cyanide pellets to control introduced brushtail possums on Middle Island


Animal Control Technologies
in conjunction with
Connovation (NZ) and the
Queensland Parks and Wildlife Service (QPWS)

February 2010

Not to be published or reproduced without the consent of the authors

Table of Contents:

1. Executive Overview 3
1.1 Toxin welfare screening for possums: 4
1.2 Feratox® cyanide pellet possum bait: 5
1.3 Non target impacts: 6

2. Methods: 7
2.1 Site Selection: 7
2.2 Bait station use: 7
2.3 Free-feeding: 8
2.4 Bait application: Feratox® cyanide pellets: 8
2.5 Possum population monitoring: 8
2.5.1 Spotlight counts: 9
2.5.2 Possum track activity: 10
2.5.3 Carcass searches: 11
2.5.4 Camera monitoring: 11
2.5.5 Pre-feed bait uptake: 11
2.6 Non-target population monitoring: 12

3. References: 12

1. Executive Overview
The Keppel Islands, which are located within Keppel Bay (adjacent to the Capricorn Coast in Central Queensland) were cut off from the mainland approximately 6 000 years ago. Brushtail possums (Trichosurus vulpecula) are native to the adjacent mainland area and have been introduced to four islands in the bay, one of which (Middle Island) is the proposed site for this possum eradication trial.

In 2002 population estimates ranged from 4 - 11 animals per hectare (habitat dependant) on one of the islands (627ha North Keppel Island), compared to an average density on the adjacent mainland of 0.2 – 0.4 individuals per hectare (Strahan, 1995). Possums were most likely introduced to islands in Keppel Bay after European settlement as a harvesting source for pelts. Genetic analysis has not iden...

... middle of paper ...

... P., Inglis, I.R. and Swinney, T. (1992) The influence of stored food on the effectiveness of farm rat control. Brighton Crop Protection Conference, 291-300.

Seber, G.A. (2001) Some new directions in estimating animal population parameters. Journal of Agricultural, Biological and Environmental Statistics, 6(2), 140-151.

Shepherd, D.B. and Greaves, J.H. (1984) A weather-resistant tracking board. In: Proceedings 11th Vertebrate Pest Conference (D.O. Clark, Ed) University of California; Davis, pp. 112-113.

Sutherland, W.J. (1996), Mammals, in Ecological Census Techniques, (Ed. W.J. Sutherland) Cambridge University Press, Cambridge.

Strahan, R. (1995) Complete Book of Australian Mammals. The Australian Museum; Melbourne.

Thomas, M. (2005) Feratox and feracol as alternatives to brodifacoum for possum control. DOC Science Internal Series 2000; Wellington.

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