Pig Problem Escalates

Farmers are reporting a fresh surge in feral pig numbers, prompting a call to escalate funding to fight the state’s feral pig problem.

NSW Farmers President Xavier Martin said with the state budget set to be handed down in just a few weeks’ time, there was a golden opportunity for funding to get feral pigs under control as numbers explode across the state.

“There’s reports of feral pigs weighing well over 100 kilograms charging through the paddocks, trashing food crops and killing calves and lambs at the drop of a hat,” Mr Martin said.

“These pests are bigger than the people trying to control them – and they are costing landholders many thousands of dollars in lost production and control costs that they simply can’t keep up with.

“They’re superspreaders of disease and reproduce at a rate that means we need to cull many millions a year to break the breeding cycle, so we have a fight on our hands that we simply can’t face alone.”

While recent efforts by the Minns Government to support baiting, trapping and aerial shooting of feral pigs had been warmly welcomed by farmers, Mr Martin warned funding for pig control must be scaled up significantly in this year’s NSW budget to get on top of the problem.

“More than 77,000 pigs have been culled by the state’s Feral Pig Program since October last year – and while this has made a dent in the population, we’ve still got millions of pigs ruining production on our prime agricultural land,” Mr Martin said.

“Farmers have been outnumbered, paddocks have been destroyed, and despite our best efforts, no one-man band can get on top of these animals when the numbers are just so wildly out of control.

“If we want to fend off these pests for good, we need to see some serious funding for feral pig control in the NSW budget this June – or else we simply don’t stand a chance.”

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