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#5745804 - 12/23/16 06:57 PM Do Dingoes have any effect on the 'Roo population.
MChewk Offline
trapper

Registered: 12/23/06
Posts: 4176
Loc: Northern Illinois
Just watched a nature show that covered 'roos....they mentioned that dingoes kill some 'roos. I was wondering if you Aussie trappers could educate me ...do dingoes kill many 'roos annually? And what keeps 'roo population in check? Man?

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#5747727 - 12/25/16 02:11 PM Re: Do Dingoes have any effect on the 'Roo population. [Re: MChewk]
newhouse114 Offline
trapper

Registered: 12/23/06
Posts: 2574
Loc: S.W.Oregon
There are proffessional roo shooters in some places. Don't know about the dingos.
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#5748231 - 12/26/16 07:19 AM Re: Do Dingoes have any effect on the 'Roo population. [Re: MChewk]
TrapperDownunder Offline
trapper

Registered: 01/02/07
Posts: 91
Loc: Brisbane, Australia age 61
Hi Guys, MChewk you have asked a very complex question I'll try and answer it the best I can after Christmas and New Year break for you if no one else joins in! I've lived in Australia for over 35 years and worked at both state and local level in dingo control. I've hunted Roos but not for a long time! Have a great holiday!
Ed

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#5748567 - 12/26/16 02:03 PM Re: Do Dingoes have any effect on the 'Roo population. [Re: MChewk]
MChewk Offline
trapper

Registered: 12/23/06
Posts: 4176
Loc: Northern Illinois
Thanks

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#5758098 - 01/03/17 05:00 AM Re: Do Dingoes have any effect on the 'Roo population. [Re: MChewk]
MChewk Offline
trapper

Registered: 12/23/06
Posts: 4176
Loc: Northern Illinois
ttt for Traperdownunder

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#5759061 - 01/03/17 08:28 PM Re: Do Dingoes have any effect on the 'Roo population. [Re: MChewk]
alpine hunter Offline
trapper

Registered: 11/07/10
Posts: 54
Loc: Australia
My take on on roos and dingoes.
Do they affect the roo population? Yes and no!
Some background...
When kangaroos are mentioned it's often thought that they are all the same but it's like lumping whitetail, mule deer, blacktail, elk, moose and pronghorn all together and calling them "deer". There are a number of different species of kangaroo that inhabit different parts of the country. Then there are the wallabies, wallaroos and potoroos that are all part of the macropod group with the kangaroos. Mostly the larger species all get lumped in together as "Roos" and I will mostly just do the same for simplicity.
They are all part of the dingoes diet to some extent.
We have hugely altered our country by adding water points and good feed where there was historically very little. Roo numbers used to be kept in check by the drought cycle. Numbers would build over good seasons, they would migrate around the country chasing good conditions but when drought hit, they would perish by the thousands. Now with all the reliable water, it takes a big drought to kill off big numbers and the roo population is unnaturally high. The more coastal temperate regions have permanent natural water and feed so it's a little different to the rangeland country further inland. These areas have plenty of Roos and plenty of dingoes but there are localised effects of dingoes reducing numbers or moving Roos around the landscape.
We have also built the worlds longest fence (1500miles long) to keep dingoes from the more productive sheep country. https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dingo_Fence
This also prevents some of the previous migration of Roos and emus. In general there are less Roos and more dingoes outside the fence than inside and this is often used as the evidence that dingoes control Roos. In reality there are a bunch of factors that cause the difference. The land outside the fence is marginal, arid country that supports less Roos, the fence stops the long distance migrations so numbers pile up against the fence and the farming/land management systems are different overall. There are also lots of dingoes inside the fence these days so the comparisons aren't that valid since dingoes are on both sides!

My experiences seem to tell me that dingoes do have an effect on roo populations but water and feed availability are much more important. I've trapped properties with high dingo numbers that also have seasonally high roo numbers - large 100000 acre properties can have tens of thousands of Roos at times while also having dozens? of dingoes.
Up in the tropical north there are thousands of agile wallabies despite a high dingo population.
Recently I trapped 19 dingoes from around a 1000 acre property surrounded by forested country in the temperate mountain area. From a single location I also counted 50 Roos bedded/feeding in the paddocks during daylight hours. There would have been twice that number that I couldn't see. Those dingo and roo numbers would both be considered excessive but the dingoes weren't having too much effect on the roo numbers.

It's such a huge topic but very interesting to delve into. We are beginning to have the apex predator debate in this country with dingoes and Roos being the two species most often talked about. Yellowstone is always raised as the example we should be following. The negative effects of that predator reintroduction are rarely mentioned by the "re-wilding" advocates though.
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#5759101 - 01/03/17 08:45 PM Re: Do Dingoes have any effect on the 'Roo population. [Re: MChewk]
MChewk Offline
trapper

Registered: 12/23/06
Posts: 4176
Loc: Northern Illinois
Thanks for writing that up...very interesting.

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#5759453 - 01/04/17 07:28 AM Re: Do Dingoes have any effect on the 'Roo population. [Re: MChewk]
TrapperDownunder Offline
trapper

Registered: 01/02/07
Posts: 91
Loc: Brisbane, Australia age 61
Thanks Alpine Hunter you hit the nail on the head! MChewk I'll still add a few more thoughts soon my wife's on holidays for two more weeks we've been busy! Hope you all had a great Christmas and New Year!
Ed

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#5759549 - 01/04/17 09:21 AM Re: Do Dingoes have any effect on the 'Roo population. [Re: MChewk]
MChewk Offline
trapper

Registered: 12/23/06
Posts: 4176
Loc: Northern Illinois
Thanks Ed I look forward to it....and I hope you Aussie trappers and family enjoyed your Holiday time also.

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#5759617 - 01/04/17 10:41 AM Re: Do Dingoes have any effect on the 'Roo population. [Re: MChewk]
Allan Minear Offline
trapper

Registered: 06/03/10
Posts: 2693
Loc: Lewistown , Mt
Thanks fellas for the insight on the dingo / roo situation there.
As you mentioned Yellowstone Park and the wolves / elk before the reintroduction of wolves we had wolves here but not to the extent we do now.
Now we have two apex predators wolves and mtn lions to deal with besides the much smaller coyotes and fox. We here in Montana can only trap wolves no snaring them yet, mtn lions can be hunted with hounds or called in and shot hopefully some day we will get to trap and snare both to control both populations more effectively.
Two years ago there were 4 or 5 mtn lions that were seen in Lewistown last year we had a black bear so never a dull moment.
Part of the reason for this is the high number of whitetail and mule deer that have moved into town.
Enjoy your Holiday and Happy New Year !
Allan
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#5768074 - 01/11/17 11:49 AM Re: Do Dingoes have any effect on the 'Roo population. [Re: MChewk]
MChewk Offline
trapper

Registered: 12/23/06
Posts: 4176
Loc: Northern Illinois
TTT for Ed...just a reminder...would love to hear your thoughts...

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#5784601 - 01/23/17 06:29 PM Re: Do Dingoes have any effect on the 'Roo population. [Re: MChewk]
TrapperDownunder Offline
trapper

Registered: 01/02/07
Posts: 91
Loc: Brisbane, Australia age 61
The Impact of Dingoes on Kangaroo Populations

As Alpine Hunter stated there are a number of species of Macropodís (Kangaroos) other than the four species commercially harvested. However, I thought I should give you a little rundown on those four species and how they are managed first.
All native wildlife in Australia is protected; however each state can manage those animals through permitted hunting. Currently only four species of kangaroo are harvested those being the eastern grey, western grey, red and the common wallaroo. There are an estimated 50 to 60 million kangaroos of the four harvestable species throughout Australia.

Iíll stick to my knowledge of Queensland; I have much less chance of getting it wrong that way! Commercial harvesting is carried out by professional roo shooters who supply carcases and skins for the pet food, human consumption and skin industries. The Queensland government does an annual survey of kangaroo populations then sets quotas based on that survey.

In 2014 the combined eastern grey, red and common wallaroo population was estimated at 27million roos. The quota for 2015 was around 4 million and they only harvested 1.1 million which was only about 31% of the quota. Another 500,000 were harvested by landholders under damage mitigation permits and only 25 recreational hunters applied for permits to hunt kangaroos for sporting purposes. Most Americans donít understand that Australia has very few hunters and even less that would spend the cash to purchase permits for kangaroo harvest.

Alpine hunter mentioned that kangaroo numbers are directly related to rainfall and drought! It is very important to understand that Australia is the driest continent on earth. 70% of Australia has less than 500 millimetres of rainfall per year. 35 % of the country is effectively dessert.
Modern farming practices and access to large underground water sources (Great Artesian Basin) have dramatically increased kangaroos numbers since colonization. Most farmers hate roos as they compete with livestock for fodder, damage crops and fences and foul water sources. Large numbers of them also get hit on the roads causing damage to vehicles and people.

Landholder (farmers) running dry cow and bullocks or farming grains often do little or no dingo control as they feel dingoes help reduce the impact of kangaroos. This causes huge problems for neighbouring landholders (farmers) running cows with calves and or sheep and goats. Even though dingoes only have a limited impact on roo numbers itís hard to convince old famers differently.

Adult dingoes require approximately 2 kilograms of meat protean per day to survive. This being said all canines binge eat (eat all they can when the foods available then go for a few days without food) when large amounts of food are available. Canines also sometimes kill animals without eating them. Iíve seen this with sheep, goats and emuís but not so much with roos. Dingoes are opportunistic hunters for the most part although they sometimes specialize for short periods of time in specific areas of their territories. Dingoes donít just feed on kangarooís and wallabies they feed on everything from small skinks (lizards) to large Red Roos.

As I said I donít think dingoes take enough kangaroos to cause a substantial impact on their numbers in rural farming areas. Where they do have an impact is along the coastal strip where groups of kangaroos and dingoes have been isolated in small parks, state land and small privately owned undeveloped land. These areas are often connected by wildlife corridors making a perfect travelway for dingoes to move from one area to the next. Iíve seen their impact in a number of these areas the joeyís are the first to go followed by the doeís and small bucks. Often all the only roos left are the large old males.

My last two years of work involved removing dingoes from a new rail corridor (13 kilometres long) to protect a large koala population from predation. During those two years I had 30 trail cameras set along wild dog travilways. I had large numbers of photos of dingoes with small wildlife (bandicoots and rats) in their mouths as they passed by the cameras and I found very little evidence of them killing large male roos. By the way we took 26 dingoes off this small stretch of land. I plan on writing more regarding this project in the near future we had some very interesting outcomes! Iíll leave it at this for now, I hope between Alpine hunter and I we have answered your questions.

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#5784683 - 01/23/17 07:18 PM Re: Do Dingoes have any effect on the 'Roo population. [Re: MChewk]
MChewk Offline
trapper

Registered: 12/23/06
Posts: 4176
Loc: Northern Illinois
Great read....thank you!

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#5785057 - 01/23/17 10:54 PM Re: Do Dingoes have any effect on the 'Roo population. [Re: MChewk]
alpine hunter Offline
trapper

Registered: 11/07/10
Posts: 54
Loc: Australia
A few pics to spice up the conversation.
This roo had taken to water as a defence against dingoes. It was unable to get free from the mud and water so I had to finish it off so it wouldn't die and foul the stock water supply. Turned out to have a broken leg and bite marks around the neck.


Same location, same morning. This roo had been run into the corner of the fence and mauled. It was actually still alive but barely breathing.


The previous night not far away this young roo had been killed and partially eaten.


Due to the continued activity, I sat and waited at the waterhole before dark. Some feral pig suckers came to water well before dark and stayed nearby. Not long before dark, a sow arrived as well. Pig squeals alerted me to some action and I moved vantage points to see two dingoes with a sucker bailed up out on the clay pan. The sow charged in to the rescue and the dogs left them alone before continuing in to water. I waited until they came in close and shot the larger one in the gloom of dusk hoping it was an adult which would leave a younger, less experienced pup for the second shot. Turned out to be a male and female pair but I didn't get a good shot at the female after she ran off and paused momentarily - I overestimated the range on the featureless clay pan and shot clean over her back.
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#5785843 - 01/24/17 05:03 PM Re: Do Dingoes have any effect on the 'Roo population. [Re: MChewk]
MChewk Offline
trapper

Registered: 12/23/06
Posts: 4176
Loc: Northern Illinois
Great pics and story!

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#5790015 - 01/27/17 06:17 PM Re: Do Dingoes have any effect on the 'Roo population. [Re: MChewk]
Allan Minear Offline
trapper

Registered: 06/03/10
Posts: 2693
Loc: Lewistown , Mt
Very interesting stories and pictures fellas, I really enjoy a glimpse of what you folks are dealing with down there. By the way we here in Montana have had well below zero temps and in some places deep snow.
Allan
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