Pest animals

A flock of corellas feeding on trees and lawn in a City park.

Feral animal control

We undertake a biannual feral animal control program in bushland and coastal nature reserves. The program targets introduced animals that present a risk to Australian native animals and plants.  Through predation and competition for food, the presence of feral animals can result in significant impacts on the ecosystem. Feral animals can also cause production and financial losses for the agricultural industry.

Which feral animal species are targeted?

Foxes, feral cats and rabbits are targeted for control in the majority of our nature reserves. Regular programs are undertaken with the aim of reducing the population and the overall impact of these animals. 

How are the program’s methodologies selected?

Feral animal control is done in accordance with the Animal Welfare Act 2002 and the Biosecurity and Agriculture Management Act 2007. The methods used by us are target-specific, humane and approved by Department of Primary Industries and Regional Development.

Special considerations are made for the safety of the general public and domestic pets while the program is carried out. Only feral animals, not domestic pets, are targeted by this program.

Who undertakes the control?

We use contractors licensed by WA Department of Health who are qualified and experienced in all aspects of the control program.

Pet ownership

Responsible pet owners are key to the success of this program. Domestic animals can still disturb or prey on vulnerable native animals. You can assist by: 

  • sterilising and microchipping pets
  • keeping dogs on a leash in public unless in an off-leash area
  • preventing cats from roaming. Bring them in at night and consider installing a cat run on your property
  • speak with your vet about vaccinating your rabbit and insect-proofing hutches.

Corella control

Tree stripped of its leaves by corellas.The City of Rockingham, like many other local governments from Geraldton to Busselton, has an increasing problem with two species of pest corella – the little corella (Cacatua sanguinea)native to the Pilbara and Kimberley region of Western Australia, and the Eastern long-billed corella (Cacatua tenuirostris), an introduced species from eastern Australia.

The number of corellas within the City’s boundaries has rapidly increased in recent years and the birds are now causing:

  • significant environmental damage to the City’s tree canopy
  • ongoing damage to other public and private assets and infrastructure (requiring high ongoing maintenance costs)
  • diminished amenity in public spaces through ongoing fouling creating public health issues
  • habitat pressure on the threatened black cockatoos and other birdlife.

Since 2014 the City has been undertaking a corella control program to reduce the impact of these invasive and highly damaging pest species. The program is conducted in accordance with the Biodiversity Conservation Act 2016 (BC Act) and Biodiversity Conservation Regulations 2018.

The two main components of the program are:

Roost culling

Both pest species are listed as ‘Managed Fauna’ under the BC Act. As such, they are permitted to be culled via firearm. The City uses qualified and experienced pest management technicians to undertake the culling of corellas in trees where the birds are roosting in high numbers.


This is managed under a Licence to Take Fauna Causing Damage issued by the Department of Biodiversity, Conservation and Attractions (DBCA).

Feeder stations containing sunflower seed and wheat have been placed in several locations where the birds congregate in large numbers. The feeding stations will attract corellas for trapping. 

  • No poison is used.
  • Birds are netted and humanely euthanased in accordance with the DBCA licence.

The City acknowledges that culling of any wildlife is potentially distressing to some people. Unfortunately it is a measure of last resort which must be taken to protect the greater environment, to minimise the damage these species are causing throughout the community, and to reduce the pest corella population to levels that are determined to be ecologically sustainable.

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