Wildlife Research Wildlife Research Society
Ecology, management and conservation in natural and modified habitats

Does Dingo Predation or Buffalo Competition Regulate Feral Pig Populations in the Australian Wet-Dry Tropics? An Experimental Study.

L Corbett

Wildlife Research 22(1) 65 - 74
Published: 1995


Dingo (Canis farniliaris dingo) predation on feral pigs (Sus scrofa) in response to experimental changes in prey populations was measured over seven years in the seasonally wet-dry tropics of northern Australia. Following the removal of feral swamp buffalo (Bubalus bubalis) from half of the 614-km*2 study area, the number of pigs doubled and there was a 3-fold increase of pig in dingo diet. The relationship between the functional response of the dingo and pig abundance was negative and significant for both the treatment and control areas. This indicated that dingoes were not regulating the pig population. Instead, dingo predation probably acted in concert with interference competition by buffalo which decreased access to critical subterranean food for pigs during the dry season and thus limited population growth in pigs.


© CSIRO 1995

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