Feral deer used to be a novelty in the Victorian high country - now there are thousands

23. prosinece 2022 15:30

Příroda

It may sound anti-Christmas, but we need to control these pests to protect our native ecosystemsSign up for the Rural Network email newsletterJoin the Rural Network group on Facebook to be part of the communityAs Christmas approaches, the image of Rudolph's red nose and the sound of jingling bells as Santa's trusty team of reindeer pull his sleigh captures the imagination of Australian children. But while these reindeer bring joy to the Christmas season, there is a darker side to their Australian counterparts. Feral deer are one of the most serious emerging environmental and agricultural threats to Australia.Deer don't belong in the Australian bush. Unlike much of the world, where deer are native, our plants and wildlife haven't evolved to deal with their hard hooves and voracious appetite. They overgraze and trample native grasslands, they ring-bark native shrubs and trees and they cause erosion and pollution by wallowing in wetlands and streams. They eat fruit trees, grapevines, crops and pastures and destroy fences, costing farmers tens of thousands of dollars every year. Deer browse on and kill trees planted by Landcare groups, foresters, farmers and local councils. After bushfires, feral deer eat any new growth and stop revegetation.Sign up to receive Guardian Australia's fortnightly Rural Network email newsletter Continue reading...
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