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News Bite - Maremma Sheepdog protectors

 

“Maremma Sheepdogs are being successfully used to protect colonies of wild birds.”

 

News from Australian Birdlife, the magazine of BIRDLIFE AUSTRALIA, which is the association created in 2012 by the merger of BIRD OBSERVERS AND CONSERVATION AUSTRALIA (BOCA) and BIRDS AUSTRALIA (BA):

 

“Near Warrnambool, at Middle Island, a thriving population of Little Penguins had been reduced to four penguins by the 1970s, and other nesting birds, such as Short-tailed Shearwaters, had all gone, due to predation by foxes (e.g. 100 penguins killed in one night). Introducing specially trained Maremmas stopped fox predation almost overnight in 2006, and the penguins and other birds returned. Similarly, at Point Danger near Portland, breeding gannets were mostly unsuccessful due to foxes. Since 2007, after the Maremmas were released there, the gannets and other birds have flourished. The dogs have also preyed on the local rabbit population, and the regeneration of the coastal scrub has been astounding.” John Peter, Senior Writer & Editor, Australian Birdlife

Provided by Ellinor Campbell

 

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