Invasive animals differ from domestic animals in that they have not simply escaped the confines of their owner's property, but are living as wild animals. Invasive animals have the ability to significantly increase in number when conditions are right, out compete or prey on native wildlife and/or spread into new territory and occupy more habitat.
Some animals are restricted matter under the Biosecurity Act 2014. Restricted matter is found in Queensland and may have an adverse effect on human health, social amenity, the economy and the environment.
Restricted matter is assigned category numbers from 1-7 based on its characteristics and the risks it poses. More than one category may be assigned if multiple restrictions are appropriate to counter the risks. A person must comply with the category requirement for the restricted matter unless otherwise authorised by regulation or permit. The categories are as follows:
Category 1 Prohibited restricted matter requires immediate containment or eradication to minimise the risk of spread. It must be reported to an Biosecurity Queensland within 24 hours of an individual becoming aware of its presence and must be reported to the State. RING BIOSECURITY QUEENSLAND IMMEDIATELY ON 13 25 23.
Category 2 restricted matter includes a range of plant and fish species that pose a significant biosecurity risk and require management. Category 2 restricted matter must be reported to an authorised officer (State or Local Government) within 24 hours of an individual becoming aware of its presence.
Category 3 restricted matter includes all invasive animals and plants where deliberate distribution or disposal is a key source of spread. It must not be given as a gift, sold, traded or released into the environment unless the distribution or disposal is provided for in a regulation or under a permit.
Category 4 restricted matter includes specific invasive plants and animals that must not be moved to ensure they are not spread into other areas of the State. As with category 3, the intention of this prohibition is to limit its distribution or spread.
Category 5 restricted matter cannot be possessed or kept under a person’s control. This restricted matter category includes invasive species that have a high pest potential and capacity to impact heavily on the environment. There are exemptions for seized items, where the restricted matter is being held for identification purposes or under permit.
Category 6 restricted matter cannot be fed unless held under a restricted matter permit or for the purposes of poison baiting. This includes invasive animals and noxious fish which are not owned by a person. The intention of this prohibition is to discourage population growth.
Category 7 restricted matter must be killed as soon as practicable and disposed of in a way described under a regulation. This is currently intended for the management of noxious fish.
Invasive animals that are considered restricted matter in the Rockhampton Region include:
- Feral Cats (Felis catus)
- Wild Dogs (Canis familiaris)
- Foxes (Vulpes vulpes)
- Feral Pigs(Sus scrofa)
- Rabbits(Oryctolagus cuniculus)
- Deer (Cervus timorensis)
- Dingo (Canis familiaris dingo or Canis lupus dingo)
- The Indian Myna (Acridotheres tristis) bird is a Locally Declared Pest under Council's Local Law 3 and is considered restricted matter in the Rockhampton Region
- Tilapia (Oreochromis mossambicus and Tilapia mariae)
- European Carp (Cyprinus carpio)
Invasive animals can:
- Spread disease
- Prey on and displace native animals
- Destroy vegetation
- Impact primary production
- Threaten humans and domestic animals.
Landowners are responsible for controlling invasive animals on their property.
Council’s Pest Management Officers are responsible for controlling invasive animals on Council land.
Council can assist landowners to control invasive animals which present a nuisance on private land by:
- Feral Animal Trapping Program - Pest Management Officers can assist in the trapping(PDF, 1MB) of certain pest animals (wild dogs, pigs, foxes and feral cats) and has a limited number of traps to loan to the public at no cost. These are not the same traps loaned out at Council's Animal Management Centre, which are for domestic animals.
- Implementing baiting programs for wild dogs and dingoes.
For more information on invasive animals visit the Biosecurity Queensland website, PestSmart website or contact Council’s Customer Service Centre on 07 4932 9000 or 1300 22 55 77.