A smell study that could change the way we control pests, several parks to be closed In coming weeks for feral animal control, and a campaign to save the red foxes; all in our monthly pest control news roundup.
Studying how insects smell food
Scientists from Perth’s Murdoch University believe that understanding how insects smell food could help in the development of next-gen, eco-friendly repellents and pesticides. The team led by insect biologist Dr. Wei Xu is looking to develop insect attractants that are more effective than bug spray and pesticides.
The scent data collected by the team is being used to make environmentally-friendly traps that protect both crops and people from pests without the need to use repellents or chemical pesticides.
Dr. Xu hopes that his research will help solve some of the global problems including reduction of diseases spread through insect bites and food insecurity.
Parks to be closed for animal control
Natural Resources Northern and Yorke has begun a program to control feral animals on conservation parks in the Southern Flinders Ranges. This will see a number of parks closed for the duration of the program which is being conducted by volunteers from the Sporting Shooters’ Association of Australia.
Parks that will be affected include the Telowie Gorge Conservation Park, Dutchmans Stern Park, Mount Brown Conservation Park, and the Napperby Block of Mount Remarkable National Park. Live ammunition will be used in the control so people are advised to keep off during closures.
A fox rescue service in campaign for permits
Sydney Fox Rescue Shelter, a fox rescue service based in Schofields, is petitioning the state government of NSW for permits to rescue and house foxes. Under the Local Land Services (European Control Order) Pest Control Order 2014, rescuing and rehoming red foxes is illegal.
While people who kept foxes before the law came into force (in March 2015) are eligible for permits, people looking to keep newly-acquired foxes can’t get permits.
The shelter’s manager Charlie Jackson-Martin is urging supporters to help his petition campaign to fight the pest control order – a battle he knows will not be easy.