CSIRO Publishing blank image blank image blank image blank imageBooksblank image blank image blank image blank imageJournalsblank image blank image blank image blank imageAbout Usblank image blank image blank image blank imageShopping Cartblank image blank image blank image You are here: Journals > Wildlife Research   
Wildlife Research
Journal Banner
  Ecology, Management and Conservation in Natural and Modified Habitats
blank image Search
blank image blank image
blank image
  Advanced Search

Journal Home
About the Journal
Editorial Structure
Online Early
Current Issue
Just Accepted
All Issues
Special Issues
Sample Issue
For Authors
General Information
Submit Article
Author Instructions
Open Access
For Referees
Referee Guidelines
Review an Article
Annual Referee Index
For Subscribers
Subscription Prices
Customer Service
Print Publication Dates

blue arrow e-Alerts
blank image
Subscribe to our Email Alert or RSS feeds for the latest journal papers.

red arrow Connect with us
blank image
facebook twitter logo LinkedIn


Article << Previous     |     Next >>   Contents Vol 27(5)

Controlling feral goats by shooting from a helicopter with and without the assistance of ground-based spotters

Paul Bayne, Bob Harden, Ken Pines and Ursula Taylor

Wildlife Research 27(5) 517 - 523
Published: 2000


The success of aerial shooting to control feral goats in arid and semi-arid environments has lead to its widespread use in rugged and more densely vegetated terrain elsewhere in Australia. In this experiment, the method’s effectiveness with and without the aid of ground spotters to assist in locating goats was evaluated in such terrain in the Chandler River Gorge near Armidale, New South Wales. The abundance of goats was estimated by applying a correction factor (1.45) to indices of abundance made by ground survey. Ground observers monitored success during the cull. Overall, only 31% of an estimated 462 goats were culled, at an average cost of $61 per goat. In all, 50% of the goats were in herds never seen by the helicopter crew, while the remaining 19% were individuals that escaped (17% unseen from the air) from herds that were shot at. Inconsistent culling success, combined with marked differences in the behaviour of goats in different experimental blocks, suggested that variable prior exposure to aerial shooting had a significant and confounding effect on the experimental outcome. Where goats had no prior experience of aerial shooting, culling success was 40% without spotter assistance and 59% with spotter assistance. Where there had been a history of aerial shooting the ground observers reported a marked increase in evasive behaviour, and the cull was only 21% even with spotter assistance. These results show that aerial shooting is not as successful in this type of terrain as has been assumed and suggest that its repeated or exclusive use will result in declining effectiveness as goats learn to evade the helicopter.

Full text doi:10.1071/WR99059

© CSIRO 2000

blank image
Subscriber Login

PDF (57 KB) $25
 Export Citation
Legal & Privacy | Contact Us | Help


© CSIRO 1996-2015