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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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Ngaliwurra-Nungali ALT 10 4 Riveren 10 4 Rosewood 0 0 Scott Creek 0 0 Spirit Hills 79 0 Victoria River (Yarralin) 0 58 VRD 5649 1016 Wallamunga 0 58 Waterloo 6507 2634 Wave Hill 3003 1945 West Mathison 0 58 Wambardi ALT 0 58 Wanimiyn ALT 79 0 Willeroo 79 0 Wombungi 5412 2061 In respect of determining the effectiveness of the control program to date, Figures 7 and 8 give the best indication. Comparison of those properties which Holznagel (2002) identified as showing compliance with the control notices with these figures indicates that those properties which had good compliance showed some to significant decrease in donkey density while those properties with poor compliance showed some to significant increase in donkey density. For horses, compliance with the control notices was poor, however, there was a decrease in horse numbers and density which will be discussed below. In other words, where there was compliance the program was effective, however the poor compliance overall (primarily in that it took three years to accomplish what needed to be done in one) has resulted in a requirement for considerable effort still to be expended to achieve effective control of donkeys and horses in the VRD. Table 6 and Figures 3, 4, 7 and 8 indicate that the majority of properties within the district have donkey and horse levels that can be brought readily under control with either the initiation of a program of maintenance shooting commencing immediately, or, a major reduction followed by ongoing low level maintenance shooting to maintain populations at less than 1,000 individuals. The following make up the latter group of properties; Daguragu ALT, Hooker Creek ALT, Kirkimbie, Limbunya, Malngin ALT, Malngin 2 ALT, Nagurunguru ALT, Victoria River Downs, Waterloo, Wave Hill and Wombungi. The decrease in horse population abundance and density from 1996 to 2001 was initially (see above) accounted for by the exclusion of domestic stock from the analysis. This was tested by including domestic stock in a later analysis to allow direct comparison with the 1996 survey results. When this was carried out it was determined that horse population abundance and density in 2001 had still declined from that of 1996 (Holznagel, 2002). This decline could only be accounted for by taking into account reported off-take (Holznagel, 2002) and