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Aerial survey of donkey and horse populations in the Victoria River District 2006



Aerial survey of donkey and horse populations in the Victoria River District 2006


Saalfeld, Keith


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Made available via the Publications (Legal Deposit) Act 2004 (NT).


2001 and 2006 Aerial survey. 2001 survey was published by Parks and Wildlife Commission of the Northern Territory, Palmerston (N.T.) 2006 survey was published by Department of Natural Resources, Environment and The Arts, Palmerston (N.T.)




Feral livestock -- Northern Territory -- Victoria River Downs; Donkeys -- Northern Territory -- Victoria River Downs; Horses -- Northern Territory -- Victoria River Downs

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Table 4: Required off-take of donkeys and horses (donkey number / horse number) for those properties with less than 1,000 individuals from the 2001 VRD feral animal survey. Property (as per Figure 5) Current Number Off take in 2002 Bunda 0 / 292 0 / 58 Cattle Creek 0 / 292 0 / 58 Delamere 0 / 292 0 / 58 Legune 361 / 0 79 / 0 Mathison (West) 0 / 292 0 / 58 Spirit Hills 361 / 0 79 / 0 Victoria River (Yarralin) 0 / 292 0 / 58 Wallamunga 0 / 292 0 / 58 Wambardi ALT 0 / 292 0 / 58 Wanimiyn ALT 361 / 0 79 / 0 Willeroo 361 / 0 79 / 0 For those properties with more than 1,000 animals as a combined population the required offtake is presented in Table 5. The off-take of donkeys and horses given in Table 5 is that required to reduce the combined total remaining to 1,000 animals for each property. When donkey and horse numbers have been reduced to a combined total of 1,000 animals an ongoing annual off-take will be required to maintain the population at this level, assuming an annual rate of increase of 22% for donkeys and 20% for horses. Discussion The population estimate for donkeys reported here is higher than those reported for any previous survey Choquenot (1988a, b), Graham et al.(1982), Saalfeld (1992, 1998). The population estimate for horses is less than that reported by Graham et al.(1982) and Saalfeld (1998) but greater than that of Choquenot (1988a, b) and Saalfeld (1992). Figure 6 shows the trend in donkey and horse numbers from 1981 to 2001. The 1981, 1984 and 1988 surveys were corrected for both observer and environmental bias while the 1992 and 1996 surveys have only been corrected for observer bias; hence it would be expected that the 1992 and 1996 surveys have underestimated population numbers to a greater degree than either the 1981, 1984 or 1988 surveys. The current survey has been corrected for both observer and environmental bias in a single correction factor for each species (Scott and Saalfeld, 1999), and the population estimates obtained considered to be a reasonable estimate of current population numbers.

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