New community deer monitoring tool launched
DeerScan was developed in response to rising concerns about feral deer.
Community website and smartphone app FeralScan has been helping thousands of landholders across Australia monitor and evaluate their feral animal management programs, through citizen surveillance.
More than 100,000 records are hosted on the platform, detailing feral animal sightings including rabbits, wild dogs, toads, camels and foxes.
Now groups and individuals managing pest animals and their impacts can use the popular website and app to report deer in their local area and the damage they cause with DeerScan.
The new feature was developed in response to rising concerns from farmers, landholder groups and the community about the negative impacts of deer.
Centre for Invasive Species Solutions chief executive officer Andreas Glanznig said, “We are hearing more stories of landholders being impacted by deer and members of the public are concerned about deer damage within national parks and protected areas, so it was important we provided an easily accessible and free product for people to report sightings.
“DeerScan links communities across Australia with government agencies, allowing us all to take action collectively and collaboratively. It is an imperative part of our Centre’s large research collaboration into deer management.”
Why use DeerScan?
Reports from the public will help develop detailed knowledge of where and how deer are using the landscape, point to problem areas and allow farmers and landholder groups to implement better management strategies. This information will help to reduce the impact of feral deer on the environment and communities.
Southern New South Wales beef producer Ted Rowley has commended the new approach to reporting deer.
“We need to know more about the distribution, density and rate of spread of deer – they are a serious and persistent threat to our cattle business,” Ted said. “Deer are already causing agricultural production losses, damaging the environment and remnant vegetation and pose a hazard to motorists on our local roads. Wild deer have been listed as a priority pest in all 11 NSW Local Land Services regional pest animal management plans. I will be using DeerScan regularly and hope other land managers use it to help focus resources for appropriate and effective management. All land managers need to work together to reduce deer problems.”
Where can you download DeerScan?
Anyone can use the DeerScan website and the free FeralScan app. All information is managed discretely and the exact locations of deer sightings are not available to the public.
FeralScan is funded through the Centre for Invasive Species Solutions with financial and in-kind support from the Australian Government, NSW Department of Primary Industries and Australian