Funding under the Australian Pest Animal Research Program
Applications are closed.
Applications are invited from local and state government agencies, incorporated community groups and research organisations for funding under round three of the Australian Pest Animal Research Program (APARP).
APARP funds research and extension projects that develop and promote improved monitoring and control techniques to reduce the agricultural impacts of pest animals. Grants of $10,000 to $100,000 per year over a 1-2 year period are available for individual projects and there is an expectation of significant in-kind and/or direct support from applicants.
To discuss your project idea, please contact the APARP coordinator. Applications will need to be submitted by Friday, 26 August 2011 for assessment. Projects are expected to commence in early 2012.
Projects must have nationally applicable outcomes and be aligned with the Australian Pest Animal Strategy and/or Caring for our Country targets. Support will not be provided for routine pest animal management activities where benefits are limited to particular regions.
APARP is funded under by the Australian Government Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry.
Guidelines and assessment plan
- APARP application guidelines PDF [90 KB]
- APARP application guidelines Word [180 KB]
- Grant application assessment plan PDF [58 KB]
- Grant application assessment plan Word [207 KB]
The Australian Pest Animal Research Program (APARP) is funded by the Australian Government Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry and administered by the Australian Bureau of Agricultural and Resource Economics and Sciences (ABARES). APARP funds research projects that develop and promote improved approaches to the management and monitoring of agricultural pest animals. The program is aligned with the goals and objectives of the Australian Pest Animal Strategy.
The main focus of APARP is to:
- develop integrated, strategic approaches to manage the impacts of nationally significant pest animals on agriculture
- improve the effectiveness of control techniques and strategies for reducing pest animal impacts on agriculture
- produce guidelines and extension materials for the best practice management of nationally significant pest animals
- quantify the benefits of pest animal management.
Priority pest species include those addressed by the Managing Vertebrate Pests guidelines, as well as the species recognised as priorities in the Caring for our Country Business Plan 2011-12 where they have demonstrated agricultural impacts. APARP also considers projects that quantify the impacts of native species (e.g. flying foxes) on agricultural production and develop non-lethal approaches to reduce these impacts. In addition, triple bottom line assessments of large-scale pest animal management projects, using case studies (e.g. Caring for our Country projects) to quantify their benefits, have also been identified as a priority.
The underlying principles of the program are outlined below. Please contact the APARP coordinator for more information.
Vertebrate pest species such as rabbits, foxes and feral goats now make up over ten per cent of Australia's mammal species. They have adapted and spread into most of Australia's agricultural systems and natural environments. None have been eradicated, despite considerable effort. With available control techniques, it is unlikely to be technically, economically or socially feasible to eradicate any established, widespread vertebrate pest from the Australian mainland. Therefore the focus of APARP is on strategic, sustained best practice management of pest animals where they are causing actual rather than perceived damage.
Principles underlying APARP
1. Managing actual rather than perceived impacts
Often impacts have not been quantified. For some situations, APARP would prefer to support 12-month pilot projects to define: basic pest ecology; nature and extent of impact; and, the stakeholders involved in the problem. Monitoring agricultural production responses to pest control during the management phase of field projects should provide some quantification of pest animal impacts and the effectiveness of management strategies.
2. Impact-based management rather than pest-based management
In some situations there are more technically, economically and socially feasible ways to reduce damage than killing pest animals (for example, pruning parrot-damaged bluegum trees can be more effective than killing parrots). Additionally, the relationship between pest density and resultant damage is not well known and is often not uniform, so reducing pest animals down to a target density may not achieve an expected reduction in damage. In other situations, pest animals are not causing major damage, or there are more significant causes of damage, so killing them will not achieve the desired improvement in agricultural production or resource/ecosystem condition. The focus of APARP is not on removing pest animals as such, but reducing their impact.
3. Strategic management
Management should be strategic in terms of:
- the land area managed
- the timing of management measures
- implementing a long-term strategy rather than a one-off management measure
- applying a combination of control techniques rather than a single technique.
4. Group management rather than individual management
Managing pest animals at the local or regional scale reduces problems with pests migrating into treated areas and achieves economies of scale. It is also important to involve all stakeholders in defining management problems and implementing solutions.
5. Commercial use where appropriate
Commercial use of the pest animal as a resource may improve the economic feasibility of pest management and is a useful management technique if it reduces pest densities to a level where damage is adequately reduced or if it is used as the first part of a higher level control program.
6. Humane techniques and strategies
APARP will support the development of more humane pest management techniques and strategies where their efficacy and cost-effectiveness are likely to be comparable to existing approaches.
17 Nov 2011