Feral goats are a destructive agricultural pest that cause significant environmental and financial damage. They are found in all mainland states of Australia with the largest numbers found in NSW, southern Queensland, central-eastern SA and WA.
To ensure a coordinated approach to feral goat control, MLA’s investment in this area is largely through its support of the Centre for Invasive Species Solutions (CISS).
- Feral goats are also widely harvested as a commercial resource.
- The MLA publication Going into Goats: Profitable producers' best practice guide provides useful information for producers considering goats as a commercial enterprise.
Impact of feral goats in Australia
Feral goats can affect livestock enterprises as they:
- compete with sheep for feed
- compete with managed goats for feed
- interfere with controlled goat breeding programs
- carry and potentially spread diseases to managed goats and sheep
- reduce biodiversity by damaging soils and vegetation in the pastoral zone.
The PestSmart website contains detailed Standard Operating Procedures for control methods, including:
The recording and mapping of feral goat activity via the FeralGoatScan app or website is encouraged as well as recording on-farm and community control activities. This coordinated tracking approach will help improve the effectiveness of future control programs.