Main Ridge man fined for illegal use of 1080 baits
20 December 2017
A hobby farmer on the Mornington Peninsula has been fined $9,500 after pleading guilty to using 1080 bait products without a licence and failing to document the required records of use.
The poison 1080, sodium fluoroacetate, can only be used by authorised persons to control vertebrate pests such as rabbits, foxes, wild dogs and feral pigs in Victoria.
Agriculture Victoria Chemical Standards Officers received information between June and July 2016 that 1080 baits were being used by an unlicensed person after the death of seven pet dogs.
The accused, who faced the Dromana Magistrates' Court, was allegedly using the baits to control feral pigs which he believed were damaging his property.
Agriculture Victoria executed a search warrant at the Main Ridge property and seized two pails of PIGOUT® Feral Pig Bait containing 1080, which the farmer said were supplied by a licenced pest
The accused made admissions to laying the baits on his property to control feral pigs. He also admitted he had not had any training on how to use the baits and had not read the product label
attached to the pails prior to using the baits.
Agriculture Victoria's Statewide Chemicals Specialist, Steven Field, said it is an offence for a person to use any Schedule 7 Dangerous Poison or 1080 bait product without appropriate authorisation under the Agricultural & Veterinary Chemicals (Control of Use) Act 1992. It is also an offence not to record its use.
Magistrate Lethbridge heard the matter and ordered the accused to pay $2,353 in costs, as well as a fine of $9,500.
The Magistrate stated that although the accused was not being prosecuted for poisoning the seven dogs, the consequences of his actions were "catastrophic" and the effects on the victims profound.
"Dealing with any poison is a serious matter because of the potential consequences," Magistrate Lethbridge said.
"This [baiting] did involve significant negligence…from a man who ought to have known better."
Agriculture Victoria's Steven Field said this case clearly highlights the risks associated with untrained and unlicensed persons using 1080 bait products.
"Some of the biggest risks present when people fail to correctly notify their neighbours, which is one of the legal requirements when using 1080 bait products."
Agriculture Victoria is continuing its investigation into the contractor who supplied the baits.
Find out more information about agricultural chemicals or call 136 186.
Categorised under: Agriculture