A review of chemical, biological and fertility control options for the camel in Australia

Lapidge,Steven J.
Eason,Charlie T.
Humphrys,Simon T.
CSIRO Publishing
Publication Year: 
Since their introduction to Australia in 1840 the one-humped camel, Camelus dromedarius, has gone from the colonist's companion to a conservationist's conundrum in the fragile arid ecosystems of Australia. Current management techniques are failing to curb present population growth and alternatives must be sought. This review assess the applicability of currently registered and developmental vertebrate pesticides and fertility control agents for camel control, as well as examining the potential usefulness of known C. dromedarius diseases for biological control. Not surprisingly, little is known about the lethality of most vertebrate pesticides used in Australia to camels. More has been published on adverse reactions to pharmaceuticals used in agriculture and the racing industry. An examination of the literature on C. dromedarius diseases, such as camel pox virus, contagious ecthyma and papillomatosis, indicates that the infections generally result in high morbidity but not necessarily mortality and this alone may not justify their consideration for use in Australia. The possibility exists that other undiscovered or unstudied biological control agents from other camilid species may offer greater potential for population control. As a long-lived species the camel is also not ideally suited to fertility control. Notwithstanding, anti-fertility agents may have their place in preventing the re-establishment of camel populations once they have been reduced through mechanical, biological or chemical means. Delivery of any generic chemical or fertility control agent will, however, require a species-tailored pathway and an appropriate large-scale deployment method. Accordingly, we put forward avenues of investigation to yield improved tools for camel control.
Name of Journal: 
The Rangeland Journal
Resource Type: 
Document Type: 
Journal Issue/Article
Australian Rangeland Society

Includes full-text resources emanating from a complete set of Australian Rangelands Society Proceedings, journal articles from The Rangelands Journal (published by CSIRO Publishing for the Australian Rangelands Society), videos and other resources abou the extensive rangelands of Australia.