With many farmers across the Central West hand-feeding livestock, Local Land Services is reminding landholders that feral pigs will also help themselves to stock feed.
Invasive Species Team Leader Nigel Boyce said landholders are seeing an increase in feral pigs around feeding and water points, which can undermine hand-feeding programs and spread disease.
“The current drought conditions are seeing feral pigs seeking out feed and water from places they would normally avoid,“ Mr Boyce said. “They are proving quite resourceful in accessing feeders and other feeding points, and cohabitating with livestock to do so.”
Feral pigs joining livestock at feed and water points also greatly increases the chance of spreading disease. “Feral pigs can carry diseases such as leptospirosis and brucellosis, which can be spread to both livestock and humans with significant health implications,” Mr Boyce said.
While the situation is not ideal, it presents an opportunity to carry out trapping, baiting or a combination of both to effectively reduce the impact caused on agricultural production and the environment.