Over forty community members gathered in Busselton last week to provide input on ways to reduce predation of domestic pets on critically endangered Western Ringtail Possums.
Participants at GeoCatch’s Responsible Pet Ownership Workshop included community group representatives, State and local government agencies, vets, dog trainers, wildlife carers, pet owners and wildlife enthusiasts, who shared their own experiences, observations and insights on the real dilemmas associated with pet ownership and protection of local wildlife.
Information collected at the workshop will help co-design GeoCatch’s new project to foster responsible pet ownership strategies in the Geographe community.
“Research has shown that the leading causes of wildlife deaths are habitat destruction, car trauma, and predation by domestic and feral animals” said GeoCatch’s Peppies for Possums Project Officer Nicole Lincoln. “GeoCatch believes there is real potential to work with the local community to successfully foster responsible pet ownership in order to protect our local western ringtail possum populations from predation by domestic pets. With a collaborative mindset, we’re confident that together we can create a well-designed and innovative project,” said Nicole.
A highlight was a presentation by guest speaker Peter Nash from the Swan NRM Committee on his experience in developing and implementing the Cat Tracker project; a responsible pet ownership project in the south west metropolitan area of Perth.
“We’re really grateful for the contributions of the workshop participants. Some great ideas were generated and the complexities and challenges around this issue were also highlighted,” said Nicole Lincoln.
The Peppies for Possums project is supported by funding from the State Government’s Natural Resource Management Program.
For more information contact Nicole Lincoln at GeoCatch on 9781 0111 or email@example.com