Successful RAPAD Round 2 Cluster Fencing Applicants Announced
The RAPAD Board have unanimously supported the recommendations of the independent technical committee, and approved funding to seven clusters across the Central and North West designated priority one areas. The seven successful clusters are Way out West, Barcoo South, Southern Dangaraga Road, Arrilalah, Stamford, Strathdarr with Wild Horse cluster to be part funded.
The clusters are made up of:
- 31 producers;
- Will fence 794km and protect 396 473 ha from wild dogs;
- Will see a $6.43m private contribution or a 293% ROI for government;
- Will see sheep numbers grow from 103 552 to an expected 239 129, an expected
- increase of 135 578;
- Will generate an expected $2.87m in direct shearing, crutching and lamb marking wages per annum from the new expected total sheep numbers.
Scott Counsell, part of the successful Southern Dangaraga Road Cluster, was grateful for the funding. “This country has the capacity to maintain 50 000 sheep, yet our current flock numbers of our cluster are around 6 000. We have a long history in breeding and running sheep and have maintained wool production since 1948. However since 2006 sheep have seen a steady decline with an exponential increase in dog activity.”
Scott continued “average lambing percentages for all of us in the cluster prior to 2006 were consistently above 60%, averaging 75-85%. Post 2006 numbers have reduced to an average of 30% due to dogs. The result of this fence being built will not only allow us to increase our sheep numbers, we are keen to bring around 34 000 sheep back, but it will also mean we would be employing extra 2 permanent staff and providing easily a month of shearing for 13 people. I honestly can’t wait to get sheep back home tucked in behind our fence.” Duncan Emmott, part of the successful Arrilalah Cluster was similarly thankful to be funded. “In 2006 our cluster ran 41 000 sheep with an average lambing percentage of 75%. In 2017 we have a combined total sheep number of 5 000 and are averaging 25% lambing. We simply had no option, we could not run sheep without an exclusion fence. Once fenced our cluster is confident of bringing back 33 000 head of sheep bringing nearly $400 000 in wages directly back into our local communities.”
“Unfortunately we were not able to fund all applicants”, said Cr Rob Chandler, Chair of RAPAD.
“For those who missed out please know the Board will be approaching the State Government and member for Gregory, Lachlan Millar and Vaughan Johnson, the Central Western Queensland Fencing Commissioner, to determine if any additional funding is available for those that missed out, and for others who may wish to fence”. Cr Chandler continued to say the QFPI RAPAD cluster fencing round 1 and 2 projects will:
- Result in 23 clusters forming, equalling 113 individual properties and 2563km of fencing, enabling 1,257,695 ha to be protected from wild dogs;
- Realise a private contribution of $17+m from cluster applicants;
- Provide an expected 348 6180 additional sheep into the region and grow sheep numbers to an expected 714,206;
- Generate an expected $8.57m in direct shearing, crutching and lamb marking wages per annum from the new expected total sheep numbers;
- Represents approximately a 35% public and 65% private investment, based on the maximum funding of $2700 per km and on average a vermin proof exclusion fence costs approx. $7000 per km
The Queensland Feral Pest Initiative has received funding through the Queensland Government to support the growth of a productive and prosperous food and fibre sector in Queensland and the Australian Government Agricultural Competitiveness White Paper, the Australian Government's plan for stronger farmers and a stronger economy.
For more information please contact
Rob Chandler RAPAD Chair 0427 512 314
David Arnold RAPAD CEO 0428 583 301
Scott Counsell South Dangaraga Road Cluster 0427 512 384
Duncan Emmott Arrilalah Cluster 0428582175