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What the Papers Say

Dog fence receives $2 million boost

Pastoralists are upbeat about eradicating the wild dogs that have made large tracts of Murchison rangeland non-viable for sheep and goats.

"We'd like to think by this time next year we'd be there," station owner and Murchison Region Vermin Council president Jason Homewood said.

He said a $2.25 million Federal grant made it possible to complete the 1400km vermin cell fence, of which 1074km had already been constructed.

Work on a 108km section is in progress and the final 218km can then be started.

The fence will then enclose 6.53 million hectares and 52 stations.

Member for Durack and Environment Minister Melissa Price announced the grant last week, and the MRVC was due to meet in Mount Magnet yesterday.

"We can start getting ready for clearing, supply and construction tenders," Mr Homewood said.

"We are following existing fences but the line will have to be cleared again, graded, washouts levelled and so on.

"Once the fence is up we work on eradicating the dogs from the inside."

Mr Homewood, who is also Mount Magnet Shire deputy president, said some former sheep stations had switched to cattle, but a lot of the country was not suited to larger animals.

"We'd be lucky if there are 5000 sheep left in Mount Magnet shire at the moment," he said.

"It was in the hundreds of thousands of sheep shorn in the 1980s."

Ms Price said the Mid West Gascoyne was a big winner in the Federal Government's Building Better Regions Fund.

"More than $3.2 million of this funding has been allocated to nine projects in the Mid West and Gascoyne, under both the Infrastructure and Community BBRF streams," she said.

Source - Midwest Times

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