Rabbit control program to commence at Mulligans Flat

Released 21/03/2016

The ACT Parks and Conservation Service will this week continue its ongoing rabbit control program in the Mulligans Flat Woodland Sanctuary.

“To ensure the ACT’s largest box-gum woodland reserve remains free from the impacts of feral animals and as part of an integrated control strategy, a program distributing the Rabbit Haemorrhagic Disease Virus (RHDV) will begin from today, Monday 21 March 2016,” Ranger in Charge, ACT Parks and Conservation Service, Joel Patterson said.

“The program involves the release of RHDV via application of the virus to chopped carrot baits which will be distributed around the reserve. After a period of free feeding, rangers will release the virus through the sanctuary on Thursday 24 March 2016.

“RHDV already exists in wild population of rabbits and it spreads both through rabbit-to-rabbit contact and via insects. The virus is species specific and is not harmful to people or other animals. Poisons cannot be used in the area due to the presence of bettongs and other native wildlife.

“The Mulligans Flat Woodland Sanctuary is surrounded by a predator proof fence which helps stop reinvasion of rabbits and helps make eradication possible.

“As a precaution, we recommend for owners of pet rabbits in the Gungahlin area to ensure their pet is vaccinated for the virus or keep their rabbit in a fly proof enclosure away from contact with wild rabbits. For further information, owners are suggested to seek advice from a veterinarian.

“The sanctuary will remain open to the public during the rabbit control program outside of existing shooting operations,” Mr Patterson said.

For more information about the RHDV program contact Access Canberra on 13 22 81.

- Statement ends -

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