Community trapping of stray cats

Assistance is being offered to Bruny Islanders to trap stray cats on private land.  By arrangement, traps can be borrowed and cats taken to the Cat Facility at Alonnah for assessment and care. We will particularly welcome help in our priority areas which include North Bruny and the Simpsons Bay, Alonnah and Adventure Bay areas.

For further information, or to loan traps please contact Kaylene Allan on 0439 885 803 or kallan@kingborough.tas.gov.au

If you are trapping feral cats in more remote areas then Conrad Daniels from Bruny Farming (ph 0409 804 340) can assist in their management.

Please remember that there is now a ban on the feeding of stray cats. This is an important part of the Bruny Island Cat By-law. Feeding stray cats can result in dense populations of unowned cats.  So if you see any stray cat, please get in touch and we can arrange to trap and assess them. This is the best way to protect their welfare and to manage their numbers and impact.

Feral cat trapping season starting again

Federal funds will soon be released to continue the fantastic work on controlling the impacts of feral cats on Bruny.

Whilst the release of funding has been slow, that has not stopped Tonia Cochran and her team at Inala from continuing to trap feral cats, with four being caught in autumn 2020.

Late autumn through winter is the peak of the trapping season, and Conrad Daniels and his team at Bruny Farming can start working the highest impacted areas of the Neck and Cape Queen Elizabeth bird colonies.

They are also available to deal with feral cats elsewhere, so please contact Conrad on 0409 804 340 to seek help.

The new three year project will be coordinated through NRM South.  Kaylene Allan from Kingborough Council, who has steered this project for the last four years, will coordinate community engagement in the program and the management of domestic and stray cats.

Cyril Scomparin from the University of Tasmania is currently exploring how the different carnivores – the native eastern quoll and the introduced cat and black rat, interact, and what this may mean for cat control.

Multi-faceted and firmly based in science, this program leads the world in understanding how, and if, feral cat eradication on a large, populated island may proceed.

It is supported by a huge range of organizations, including the local businesses Pennicott Wilderness Journeys, Bruny Island Coastal retreats, and of course BIEN.

For further information see the Kingborough Council website.

 

CONSORT Battery Trial Report

Set on Bruny Island as a neat microcosm of Australia, and with a single electricity cable supplying the research area, the CONSORT Battery Trial researched how ‘prosumers’ could contribute to a smarter future by sharing household scale solar electricity generation and battery storage with the entire network.

‘Prosumers’ both produce electricity, and consume it. Trial participants were subsidized to install rooftop solar panels paired with batteries and controllers, whilst connecting to both the grid and to the internet.

Funded by ARENA, done by three universities, the local electricity network and a company specializing in network aware solar/battery controllers, the trial looked at:

  • how can and why do people chose to participate in distributed solutions to electricity supply?
  • how can this participation be best coordinated (refining and testing algorithms to reduce peak load on electricity networks )?
  • how can prosumers be best paid for distributed solutions?

The final report for the trial illuminated these questions, finding that not all people wanted to be part of a wider societal energy solution and further, that using price signals to change behavior was not universally successful.

Probably the biggest successes for the trial was in testing algorithms to orchestrate how the PV/battery combos worked together to help manage the network’s peak loads. The trail-installed PV/battery systems totalled 128kW (PV) and 333 kWh (in batteries).

On Bruny, the single cable supplying most of the island is old and tired, especially when high loads heat it up, such as short holidays when many people flock to Bruny for a quick break.

To deal with these big loads, TasNetworks runs a diesel generator, producing greenhouse gas emissions in Tasmania’s otherwise largely renewable system.

Results show an overall 33% reduction in diesel use and a lack of need for the generator on 24 days when it would normally have been used – a fantastic feat given the rather small percentage of installed system versus overall demand!

Algorithms developed within universities were trialed and adapted using real-time conditions. These work on both predicting demand and in recompensing prosumers for their participation.

Read the full detailed report here (32 pages) and find out about industry awards here.

Cat management project update July 2019

Great progress continues with the cat management project, with cat numbers declining, new management approaches being trialed, Bruny Farming taking a major role, and support from the University of Tasmania and the Commonwealth Government continuing.

The report attached details cat occupancy and feeding habitats:

  • success in removing both feral and stray cats (122 cats all up!)
  • but evidence of rapid re-colonisation following removal
  • few cats north of Great Bay
  • many cats at the Neck and Whalebone shearwater and little penguin colonies
  • greatly increased activity at colonies during breeding season
  • widespread although low density of cats in the wetter forests of Southern Bruny
  • differences in the success of baits across the different habitats
  • limited success in removing ‘trap-shy’ cats
Distribution of 3.1kg female cat in and out of bird breeding season, Cape Queen Elizabeth

Communtiy engagement, particularly with current cat owners has been high, with Bruny Farming taking a lead role in this, and other activities. This enables a cooperative and harmonious approach, which in turn leads to success in reducing the impact of cats on Bruny’s wildlife.

Read the full report here..

Citation: Allan, K (2019) Bruny Island Cat Management Project update Feb – July 2019. Kingborough Council