New committee members to manage wild dogs in Victoria

The Victorian Government has announced the newly appointed Chairperson and members to the Wild Dog Management Advisory Committee.

The new Committee will be chaired by Mr Ron Harris and comprise six members that have knowledge and expertise in wild dog and biodiversity management.

Mr Harris is a sheep and cattle farmer, and previously held an Executive Director role with the former Victorian Department of Environment and Primary Industries.

Mr Harris was awarded a Public Service Medal for his work transforming the lamb industry into a vibrant, export-oriented sector, and in leading the development and delivery of innovative services for farmers and rural communities.

The Committee members include Alan Brown, Simon Lawlor, Michael McCormack, Paul Carroll, Dr Ernest Healy and Dr Euan Martin Ritchie.

The six members bring a range of credentials to the Committee, including skills and experience in wild dog management, wild dog research, catchment management and threatened species management.

The Committee will advise the Victorian Minister for Agriculture on matters relating to the strategic management of wild dogs in Victoria.

This will help Agriculture Victoria better understand grass roots issues,  inform policy, and assist the Victorian Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning to link operations to strategic priorities and community expectations.

Wild dogs are a significant challenge for land managers and are estimated to cost Victoria’s livestock industry up to $18 million per year.

The Victorian Government has provided $6.3 million in additional funding over four years to support the ongoing management of wild dogs and foxes in the Victorian Budget 2016/17.

The establishment of the Committee follows an independent evaluation of Victoria’s wild dog management program, which highlighted the need for land owners and managers to continue to work in partnership.

Source: Vic Government