Journal article

Remote chemical immobilisation method for free-ranging Australian cattle

JO Hampton, A Skroblin, AL Perryc, TR De Ridderd



BACKGROUND: Many situations are encountered in Australia where the capture and restraint of free-ranging cattle (Bos taurus/Bos indicus) is required. Chemical immobilisation via darting is a potentially useful tool for managing and researching large wild herbivores; however, there is no reliable method for its application to Australian cattle. The aim of this study was to develop an efficacious, humane, cost-effective ground darting method for free-ranging cattle. METHODS: The 30 female cattle were darted and captured on a pastoral station in north-west Australia from a vehicle. Xylazine (0.59 mg/kg) and ketamine (3.59 mg/kg) were used to capture animals and yohimbine (0.10 mg/kg) was used a..

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Funding Acknowledgements

The authors thank the Australian Wildlife Conservancy (AWC), Rangelands Natural Resource Management (NRM) and the Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation (CSIRO) for facilitating this study. The study was conducted and funded through the 'Cattle Responses to EcoFire as a Management Tool Demonstrating the Benefits' project, initiated by the AWC and Rangelands NRM and funded by the Australian Government's National Landcare Programme. We thank Hugh McGregor from AWC for help with fieldwork, Cait and Nigel Westlake from Mount House Station for access to study animals and support, Kira Andrews and Grey Mackay from Rangelands NRM, as well as Sarah Legge from AWC, who developed the overarching study. For advice relating to cattle darting, we thank Tony Searle, John Skillington, Neal Finch, Enoch Bergman, Tristan Jubb, Peter Adams, Michael Laurence, Tony Tully, Michael Patching, Tony English, Kate Parrish, Michael Elliott, Michael Everett and Callum McDonald.