Pest and feral animals degrade our natural resources, damage precious remnant vegetation, compromise biodiversity and interfere with human health and recreation.
What do I do if I have a pest or feral animal issue?
If you are experiencing a pest or feral animal issue on your property, it is important that you take steps to resolve the issue yourself. Ipswich City Council’s role in relation to pest and feral animals is limited to matters on Council owned land as well as assessing and regulating when an issue is, or becomes, a public health concern.
The following animals have been declared by the State Government as pest animals:
- Wild dogs (other than a domestic dog)
- European fox
- Feral pig
- European rabbit
For more information and toolkits on these pest animals see PestSmart Connect’s Pest Portal or the Department of Agriculture and Water Resources.
If you have taken responsible steps to resolve the issue yourself and have not been successful, you can contact Council who can discuss with you and provide further advice.
Ants, spiders, wasps and termites
If you are having an issue at your property with any of these pests, contact a licensed Pest Control service who may be able to assist.
Fire ants are one of the world’s most invasive species. When disturbed, they can become very aggressive and agitated. If you have been bitten by fire ants, seek medical attention immediately. For control, treatment and management of fire ants, see the Queensland Government or phone 13 25 23.
It is illegal to keep rabbits in Queensland. For more information visit the Department of Agriculture and Fisheries. To report wild rabbit activity in your area, visit the Darling Downs-Moreton Rabbit Board.
Rats and Mice infestation
If you are experiencing a rat/mouse issue on your property, contact a licensed pest control service.
It is an offence to allow your property to shelter rats and mice due to overgrown vegetation or accumulation of rubbish. Clean up costs and penalties may apply if you do not maintain your property to prevent these vermin.
Preventing a rat or mouse infestation
- Remove all food sources by covering over bins, close cupboards and store food in sealed containers with lids.
- Clean up seed, waste and food from bird cages, enclosures and coops.
- Avoid leaving pet food out overnight.
- Remove or prevent access to breeding sites by blocking up holes, having clean yards (including cut lawn), sheds, under houses and attic spaces, and ensure you don’t stockpile rubbish and lumber.
- Stack timber and boxes at least 30 cm above the ground and 30 cm away from walls, so rats can’t burrow under them.
- Trap and/or use bait to eliminate rats, including rodent bait, snap traps and cage traps.
Rodent-proof your house
- Immediately repair any breakage in wall linings and roof cavities.
- Place metal gauze between the building and any protruding pipes.
- Remove or cover an unused grate, plug or pipe.
- Trim any overhanging branches.
- Seal or cover any holes around the house.
Some mosquitoes in and around your house can cause diseases such as Ross River Virus, Barmah Forest Virus and possibly Dengue Fever. It is the property owners’ responsibility to prevent mosquitoes from breeding on their property.
Reduce your property risk
The best way to ensure mosquitoes do not breed in your backyard is:
- Tip it – tip water from containers and objects
- Store it – store items away when not in use
- Throw it – throw away items you no longer use
Check the following five breeding hotspots weekly:
- Ponding water
- Pools of still and shallow water attract mosquitoes wishing to breed. Fill them with soil or sand and plant over with grass or plants. Other areas where water can pool include bird baths, wading pools, boats and dinghies, flower vases, unstocked fish ponds and water holding plants (e.g bromeliaeds and staghorns). Check these regularly to ensure water is not pooling or mosquitoes are not breeding.
- Pot plant bases
- The shallow warmed water in pot plant bases is ideal for breeding – a pot plant base can support up to 150 mosquito larvae. Place sand in bases if possible to absorb extra moisture or empty bases regularly, wiping out to remove mosquito eggs.
- Blocked roof guttering
- Clogged or unmaintained guttering prevents rainwater escaping. Keep tree branches away from gutters and check gutters for leaves and obstructions regularly.
- Disused tyres can hold water and provide an ideal warm site for breeding. Dispose of old tyres appropriately or store undercover. Drill holes in tyres used as children’s swings to allow water to drain.
- Collections of rubbish
- Collections of rubbish can hold small pools of water that mosquitoes can breed in. Dispose of all rubbish either in your refuse bin or visit one of Council’s Refuse and Recycle Centres. Store items you are keeping undercover and ensure drums and containers capable of holding water are kept upside down.
How do I report a pest issue to Council?
Council does not offer any services to manage or remove pest animals from a private property unless it is, or becomes, a public health concern or risk to neighbours and Ipswich residents (e.g rat infestation due to an overgrown property). Council also manage pest and feral animal matters on Council owned land.
Discuss with your neighbour
If you believe your pest issue may be related to activity on a neighbour’s property, it is best to speak to them first. People are sometimes unaware that their activities are causing an issue. Ipswich City Council encourages all residents and businesses to talk to their neighbours first about nuisances and issues and only make a complaint to Council if the issue remains unresolved.
If you are aware of a pest or feral animal issue on Council owned land or believe an issue may have a public health risk, you can make a request to Council to investigate by following the steps below:
1.Have the following information ready:
- What is the issue (e.g vermin problem due to excess rubbish at a property)?
- What is the risk to the community?
- Where is the issue (location)?
- Your details (this complaint cannot be lodged anonymously)
2.Contact Council by one of the methods below:
Please note: Council keeps complete and comprehensive records in the event that legal action is taken. All parties including the complainant and other witnesses may be asked to attend court to provide evidence. Personal information is only given out when it is directed by law that we do so.
How does Council manage a pest issue complaint?
- Council sends out a letter and fact sheet to the address of the alleged offender advising them of the issue.
- If Council is then advised that the issue has continued we will investigate further.
- Council will initially attend the property causing the issue and determine if a pest issue is detectable or the cause is evident.
- If no issue is detected, Council Officers will contact the person who has made the report and see if further information is available or advise of the outcome.
- If a breach is identified, Council speak to the residents causing the issue to attempt to resolve it. If necessary, Council may issue Compliance Notice.
- If a Compliance Notice is issued, a follow up process is put in place and will be undertaken to determine if the breach is ongoing after the expiration of the notice.
- If the breach is found to be continued then further action, including the issuing of infringement notices, can occur.