Smart phone technology traps Noosa feral pig pack
Noosa Council's weapons of choice in a battle to reclaim an aircraft landing strip from a pack of wild pigs were not high-powered rifles but mobile phones.
While that might have seemed an almighty mismatch, council pest and vector officer Jason Sherriff and land protection officer Cameron Jackson knew exactly what they were doing with the cutting-edge technology.
The pest management crew was called in amid growing concerns over damage being done to the airstrip and nearby properties.
They set up monitoring cameras at a feeding station that was built to lure the pigs away from the airstrip.
They installed an electronic Jager trapping system after a week of feeding the pigs.
Council environmental services manager Craig Doolan said real-time trap site images were then sent to the crew's mobile phones so they could remotely close or reset the trap with a simple texted code.
Mr Doolan said the technology was a game changer for dealing with feral pests after the crew captured 15 pigs, including three boars each weighing more than 100kg.
"Since the initial capture, the landing strip trap has captured a further three solitary boars over the past four days," Mr Doolan said.
"The trap will remain active for about another week to ensure the issue has been resolved."
Mr Doolan said feral pigs were one of Queensland's worst pests and could do enormous environmental and economic damage if not effectively managed.
"Council works closely with landholders across the shire to control feral pigs on private and public land," Mr Doolan said.
The council owns two Jager traps which are in constant use throughout the shire.