South Australia's landholders will have the opportunity to develop their understanding of feral deer control and the use of large-scale deer traps as part of a new state project.
The latest land initiative is funded by the Australian Government's Smart Farms, Small Grants program and responds to the animal numbers increasing in SA in the past decade.
The project is supported by Livestock SA, plus associated state land partners, who will use a $50,000 grant to showcase large-scale deer traps to support more productive and sustainable agricultural practices.
Livestock SA CEO Andrew Curtis said the project will include training workshops and trial work to enable a better understanding by landowners and land groups of the effectiveness and benefits of large-scale traps.
"The destruction and farm biosecurity risks caused by feral deer is a serious concern in some regions which will continue without the use of large-scale traps in the future," Mr Curtis said.
"Our aim is to increase capability and promote landscape control of feral deer to improve the productivity and sustainability of agricultural practices in SA.
Workshop are planned for mid to late 2021
Mr Curtis said the new project will not only empower farming communities and promote community-based control of pest animals impacting productivity and sustainability, it will also reduce the impacts of illegal hunting and trespassing on private property.
PIRSA's deer control coordinator Jennifer Gillis said the funding will help educate producers on how effective traps are to reduce the impact of feral deer on their land.
"The competition for pasture, soil erosion and degradation of creeks and riverbanks together with damage and loss of horticulture crops are just some of the issues associated with feral deer impacts on agricultural production," she said.
"Traps are an established method of capturing deer in areas of New South Wales and New Zealand. However, they are not widely used in SA."
Traps are currently installed in both the Mid North and Fleurieu Peninsula and trials will begin soon.
Recent funding was also provided by the Limestone Coast Landscapes Board through the Grassroots Grants to install another deer trap for further trials in the South East.
More information regarding this program will soon be available on the Livestock SA website.