Ecological impacts of feral pig diggings in north Queensland rainforests

This two-year study examined the impacts of feral pig diggings on five ecological indicators: seedling survival, surface litter, subsurface plant biomass, earthworm biomass and soil moisture content. Twelve recovery exclosures were established in two habitats (characterised by wet and dry soil moisture) by fencing off areas of previous pig diggings. A total of 0.59 ha was excluded from further pig diggings and compared with 1.18 ha of unfenced control areas. Overall, seedling numbers increased 7% within the protected exclosures and decreased 37% within the unprotected controls over the two-year study period. A significant temporal interaction was found in the dry habitat, with seedling survival increasing with increasing time of protection from diggings. Feral pig diggings had no significant effect on surface litter biomass, subsurface plant biomass, earthworm biomass or soil moisture content.

Author J. Mitchell, W. Dorney, R. Mayer and J. McIlroy
Date 18/12/2007
Year 2007
Secondary title Wildlife Research
Volume 34
Number 8
Institution Department of Primary Industries and Fisheries, QL
Department Department of Primary Industries
Pages 603?608
Notes Notes
Region QLD