BURROWYE farmer Noel Cheshire yesterday said reports that aerial baiting may be approved for Victoria were heartening.
But Mr Cheshire said the fight against a growing wild-dog population required “the whole package” including the filling of vacant positions for dogmen in the North East.
Mr Cheshire, a former member of the North East wild dog committee, advocated the use of fresh-meat baits and more flexibility that would allow baiting beyond the ruling three-kilometre buffer zone.
Manufactured artificial baits are now used and there has long been criticism of their effectiveness.
“We must have fresh-meat baits made locally,” Mr Cheshire said.
“There is too much human scent on manufactured baits.”
Mr Cheshire constantly pushed for meat baits when liaising with the government during his seven years on the wild dog advisory committee.
“It was hard to get my views across because of bureaucratic laws,” Mr Cheshire said.
He said the Holbrook Pasture Protection board would provide fresh-meat baits, but approval was needed from Victoria’s Department of Environment and Primary Industries.
He said there was “huge success” with these baits in NSW.
Mr Cheshire also suggested putting out baits without poison in them a couple of times to get dogs accustomed to them.
He believed poisoned baits would then more likely be taken.
Tallangatta Valley farmer Stuart Morant last week saw four dogs rounding up cattle and calves on the neighbouring farm of beef farmer Adrian Hobbs who last month lost a prized working dog to wild dogs.
There are about 2000 Wagyu cattle on the property Mr Hobbs manages.
Mr Morant said he had seen the four yellow-coloured dogs about 7.30am on Tuesday.
He noticed them after cattle and calves had galloped off a hill.
The dogs hunted them to level ground near the Tallangatta Creek and tried to isolate a calf.
The cows managed to thwart them and the dogs trotted off.
“I have never seen wild dogs in a pack working cows and calves,” Mr Morant said. “This increase in dogs correlates with a lack of dogmen in the field.”