Kalbarri and Nambung national parks, in Western Australia's Mid-West, have been baited with the feral cat bait Eradicat to help protect important populations of native animals.
Environment Minister Albert Jacob said the spring baiting, under the Liberal National Government's Western Shield wildlife recovery program, covered an area of more than 1,700 square kilometres.
"At Kalbarri National Park, this baiting directly assists the repopulation of black-flanked rock wallabies, which were rediscovered in the park last year after being considered locally extinct for 20 years," Mr Jacob said.
"With numbers boosted by the arrival of 23 Wheatbelt black-flanked rock wallabies in May, it is important to support this work by using the specially developed Eradicat bait to reduce predation risk. It will also help to safeguard populations of chuditch and malleefowl in the park."
The baiting in Kalbarri National Park is part of $1.7 million in Australian Government National Landcare Programme funding to integrate Eradicat into Western Shield baiting programs.
The Minister said the State Government's overhaul of WA's environmental laws, including the new Biodiversity Conservation Act, would further protect threatened species.
"The new critical habitat provisions of the new Act will allow the Minister for Environment to specially protect areas of threatened species habitat that are critical for their survival," he said.
Eradicat is also protecting vulnerable malleefowl and fairy tern populations in Nambung National Park, about 200 kilometres north of Perth. Funding from Western Shield sponsor Tronox helps in controlling foxes and feral cats and monitoring native wildlife in the park.
"Nambung National Park and surrounding nature reserves also support a number of priority species including quenda, tammar wallaby and western brush wallaby, so this wildlife recovery work is particularly important," Mr Jacob said.
The baiting is conducted by the Department of Parks and Wildlife, which developed the Eradicat bait after more than 10 years of testing in regions across WA.
At least 53 threatened mammal and bird species remain in existence in areas that have been baited under Western Shield
More than three million hectares of Parks and Wildlife-managed conservation lands are baited for foxes and feral cats annually under Western Shield
Minister's office - 6552 5800