THE call for more funding to manage feral deer in the South East is heading to Canberra with Federal Member for Barker Tony Pasin joining the push.
He is advocating for increased support for the Limestone Coast Landscape Board to bolster its feral deer control program through aerial abatement.
Mr Pasin was joined by representatives of the local Landscape Board and local landholders in Keilira to see first hand the damage feral deer are doing to the environment and the impacts on agricultural productivity.
"Since 2009 the most effective tool in removing large numbers of feral deer has been the aerial control program," Mr Pasin said.
"The program has seen over 12,000 feral deer removed from the Limestone Coast Landscape but it's clear that more needs to be done.
"Reducing feral deer numbers across the Limestone Coast will have a positive impact to improve native habitat and support our primary producers."
Mr Pasin said deer posed a risk to threatened plant species, particularly in the wake of the Kielira bushfire, as young plants were returning.
He said there was also concerns about biosecurity and disease, as well as the damage they did to fences and vineyards and competition they created for stock with pastures.
"We need more funding for the aerial abatement program and I'll be working in Canberra to deliver that outcome for our local community," said Mr Pasin.
The Limestone Coast Landscape Board usually conduct aerial culling twice a year, and earlier this year, removed 600 feral deer from the region, across 57 private properties and 22 Department for Environment and Water reserves - covering 128,000 hectares during a five-day exercise.
The Limestone Coast Landscape Board also uses other control tools, such as the use of professional ground shooting contractors, commercial harvesting and supporting partnerships to trial new approaches including deer traps and thermal-assisted ground and aerial shooting techniques.
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