Influence of dingoes on sheep distribution in Australia

Allen, B. L. and West, P. (2013) Influence of dingoes on sheep distribution in Australia. Australian Veterinary Journal, 91 7: 261-267. doi:10.1111/avj.12075


Author Allen, B. L.
West, P.
Title Influence of dingoes on sheep distribution in Australia
Journal name Australian Veterinary Journal   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 0005-0423
1751-0813
Publication date 2013-07-01
Sub-type Critical review of research, literature review, critical commentary
DOI 10.1111/avj.12075
Open Access Status DOI
Volume 91
Issue 7
Start page 261
End page 267
Total pages 7
Place of publication Chichester, West Sussex United Kingdom
Publisher Wiley-Blackwell Publishing
Language eng
Abstract To describe the influence of the dingo (Canis lupus dingo) on the past, present and future distributions of sheep in Australia.

The role of the dingo in the rise and fall of sheep numbers is reviewed, revised data are provided on the present distribution and density of sheep and dingoes, and historical patterns of sheep distribution are used to explore the future of rangeland sheep grazing.

Dingoes are a critical causal factor in the distribution of sheep at the national, regional and local levels. Dingo predation contributed substantially to the historical contraction of the sheep industry to its present-day distribution, which is almost exclusively confined to areas within fenced dingo exclusion zones. Dingo populations and/or their influence are now present and increasing in all sheep production zones of Australia, inclusive of areas that were once 'dingo free'.

Rangeland production of wool and sheep meat is predicted to disappear within 30-40 years if the present rate of contraction of the industry continues unabated. Understanding the influence of dingoes on sheep production may help refine disease response strategies and help predict the future distribution of sheep and their diseases.
Formatted abstract
Objective To describe the influence of the dingo (Canis lupus dingo) on the past, present and future distributions of sheep in Australia.

Design The role of the dingo in the rise and fall of sheep numbers is reviewed, revised data are provided on the present distribution and density of sheep and dingoes, and historical patterns of sheep distribution are used to explore the future of rangeland sheep grazing.

Results Dingoes are a critical causal factor in the distribution of sheep at the national, regional and local levels. Dingo predation contributed substantially to the historical contraction of the sheep industry to its present-day distribution, which is almost exclusively confined to areas within fenced dingo exclusion zones. Dingo populations and/or their influence are now present and increasing in all sheep production zones of Australia, inclusive of areas that were once ‘dingo free’.

Conclusions Rangeland production of wool and sheep meat is predicted to disappear within 30–40 years if the present rate of contraction of the industry continues unabated. Understanding the influence of dingoes on sheep production may help refine disease response strategies and help predict the future distribution of sheep and their diseases.
Keyword Canis lupus dingo
Livestock production
Sheep grazing
Sheep production
Small ruminants
Wild dog predation
Wild dogs
Livestock
Biodiversity
Industry
Trends
Q-Index Code C1
Q-Index Status Confirmed Code
Institutional Status UQ

Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Critical review of research, literature review, critical commentary
Collections: School of Agriculture and Food Sciences
Official 2014 Collection
 
Versions
Version Filter Type
Citation counts: TR Web of Science Citation Count  Cited 22 times in Thomson Reuters Web of Science Article | Citations
Scopus Citation Count Cited 29 times in Scopus Article | Citations
Google Scholar Search Google Scholar
Created: Sun, 28 Jul 2013, 10:06:11 EST by System User on behalf of School of Agriculture and Food Sciences