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The dingo has made Australia its home for over 4000 years, and yet it is under threat from persecution. Whilst hybridisation is also a concern, with the World Conservation Union classifying the dingo as vulnerable to extinction due to hybridisation, it is clear that dingoes (both pure and hybrid) play an essential role in our ecosystems that must be maintained.

In the past HSI has submitted nominations to have pure bred dingo populations protected under law, such as those in Kosciusko National Park, Simpson Desert, Arafura Swamp in Arnhem Land, Kapalga in Kakadu National Park, Bradshaw Field Training Area (Northern Territory, Fraser Island and five islands off the Kimberley coast in Western Australia. HSI has also sought unsuccessfully for the dingo to be protected under Commonwealth threatened species laws.

However with the main threat now facing dingoes being persecution, HSI is focussing its efforts on getting a National Conservation Plan in place for the dingo, and getting recognition under national environment laws of the role dingoes play in maintaining ecosystems.

HSI wants to see a coordinated national approach for conserving the dingo and its significant role in the ecosystem. Scientific studies have demonstrated that the presence of dingoes and other top-order predators such as Tasmanian devils have a positive effect on the environment in which they live, regulating all other ecological processes. The presence of dingoes is therefore likely to be of benefit to conservation efforts underway to many listed threatened species. For example for the vulnerable Greater Bilby, the presence of dingoes may in fact lead to an improvement in the habitat for that species.

The presence of dingoes could be so beneficial that the control of dingoes is more likely to be considered an indirect threat to listed threatened species, as loss of dingoes from the environment leads to increases in fox and feral cat abundance. Australia’s feral cat population is thought to be responsible for the deaths and possibly drive towards extinction of over 100 native mammal and bird species.

Conservation of the dingo can provide a long-term sustainable solution to feral cat control, as part of the suite of tools currently being deployed across Australia against feral cats. Dingo conservation will help deliver conservation benefits for many species – not just for the dingo!

Latest News



10th August 2016 click here

hsi funds dingo research

January 2014 click here 

International experts highlight the need to protect the dingo

June 20, 2011   click here


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