Tuesday, 16 January 2018

The Truth About Dingoes 11: Dingoes the essential Australian natives

Feral Cats
If you follow the environment news, you will most certainly see a lot about feral cats in the last few years and the horrendous toll they have had on wildlife since European arrival.

In one way this is a good thing because finally Australia is waking up to the fact that the beloved house moggies and their descendants have buggered our biodiversity. As a result, we have the highest extinction rate of any country. 

However, the newfound enthusiasm for killing anything feline is being used as a distraction from bigger environmental issues and to camouflage the complete incompetence of governments and their all-out war on the environment.

Headlines like Australia aims to end extinction of native wildlife by 2020 and goals of ending the loss of mammal species by 2020 are blatant wool-pulling-over-the-eyes public.

Yes, cats are bad for Australia, but we will never eradicate them. Moreover, we will never stop extinctions with our track record, just slow them down.

After years of building fences and poisoning everything we can, do people honestly believe that we're suddenly going to end the problem of cat predation?
you'll see that by far and away our best chances for reducing cat population is to use our natural systems to their advantage - Let Dingoes do the work. Targeting certain populations of cats with culling will never, ever result in long term density suppression unless we couple such approaches with full scale ecosystem management.

We already have the knowledge and technology, so for biodiversity’s sake, let's use them.

We now have our very own threatened species commissioner who is trying his best but...

Neither of our environmental minister’s approaches mention anything about dingoes, ever, nor do they challenge their government's renewed love for habitat destruction and deforestation.

Cat's kill, but habitat destruction and continued bush clearing will have far more lasting and substantive effects on biodiversity than cats ever will.

Addressing all causes of biodiversity loss simultaneously is an absolute necessity.

Our environmental ministers need to get their heads out of the sand and join forces with our ecologists and use Dingoes to design a system that actually works and addresses the extinction crisis. Their approach so far will not work - not the use of more poisons.
Information reproduced with permission from http://jennyleeparker3.wixsite.com/aussie-canis-dingo

Tuesday, 9 January 2018

The Disastrous Effects of the Loss of Pack Leader

Berenice with Flowers, Peter Pan and Napoleon

In 1987 Berenice wrote about the impact of the loss of two senior male Dingoes over three years. The first was Napoleon and then, in 1987, Peter Pan.

Napoleon was a born leader, and during his life time undisputed leader. Under the
protection of his keen vigilance, our Dingoes were confident; when he accepted a
person, they accepted; when he accepted a frightening situation, they could adjust.

After Napoleon's sudden death, the responsibility of the group suddenly fell
on Peter Pan. He had always been more an 'uncle' figure, never an alpha, and in
desperation he turned to me for support, his eyes appealing to me to solve the
dreadful predicament that had befallen the group.

Between Peter, and senior female Dora, our little pack survived but, sadly, individuals were becoming more and more cautious through lack of a strong leader. Within a short time of Peter's death trust has further diminished, and the confidence of even the most outgoing seriously undermined.

The demise of our 'pack' following the loss of their leader, closely follows
the patterns recorded in the wild on wolves. The trauma caused by the death of an
alpha member has been known to throw the pack into such turmoil that it has never

Despite domesticity and the fact that our Dingoes are regularly taken out walking and
handled by members, we are seeing a similar tragedy unfolding here, and we
only hope that in understanding the situation, we can now take· steps to support our
friends through this traumatic period.

Wednesday, 13 December 2017

The Alpha by Pat Rawle

Ky left and Carra right.

Just before I left Sydney for the far north coast, I did a quick trip to “Merigal” to say farewell to Berenice and the dingoes. It was a surpise visit and nobody to be seen as I walked in, leaving my part dingo in the car in the street.

Walking past one of the enclosures on my way to the house, several pups (and Mum) spotted me, of course, but only one or two came up to the fence. The others stayed well back with Mum.

Berenice came out and after I had had an admiring peep at Sheila (in her house yard) Berenice asked me to bring my dog in, which was very unusual. She then told me to take my dog, Kyogle, over to the fence containing the pups. Berenice watched the reaction of the pups and it became obvious that she knew Ky was an alpha and was using her to confirm her own pecking order selection. As with my first look at the pups, the same thing took place – just one or two coming over to the fence, the others staying fairly close to Mum in various positions.

The pups reacted in the same way to Ky’s scent as they had to mine, which of course was Ky’s.

Dogs incredible sense of smell is always a wonder to me. Whenever I am out without my current alpha (dingo) and meet people with a dog they (the dog or dogs) show me the same respect as they would to my alpha. A quick sniff of me and deference is displayed at once!