Two litters of wild dingoes caught by dingo hunters, Gulguba, Queensland. Picture: The Queenslander, March 9, 1933.
Two litters of wild dingoes caught by dingo hunters, Gulguba, Queensland. Picture: The Queenslander, March 9, 1933.

Flashback: Bounty hunting fox and dingo scalps for cash

A DEN of foxes was fumigated at a property in Calen this week after Rocky the conservation dog sniffed them out.

But for decades, councils in the Mackay area encouraged residents to kill foxes and dingoes, and paid them for their scalps.

In 1927, a correspondent from Flaggy Rock wrote in to the Daily Mercury they were fed up over being paid what is in today's money 67c for fox scalps.

They said the Mackay region was also once home to a Lance Rawson who released a book with a tasty fox recipe.

"Now if we could only open up a trade with the swell hotels, where they require something extra strong, we might develop an industry in foxes," the correspondent wrote.

"We could freeze them and send them overseas."

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Today, public and private landholders must manage foxes as well as dingoes as declared pests, which AgForce estimated to cost Queensland agriculture more than $60 million each year.

The Isaac Regional Council still accepts dingo scalps at its Clermont Depot on the second Tuesday of every month paying bounty hunters $30 per scalp for males, females and pups.

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Guidelines state scalps must be "a single piece of skin and fur, running from the snout, including the ears and running from the head, along the animal's back and including the tail".

"All scalps must be properly removed from the animal, cleaned, dried and salted prior to submission … are not to be frozen or display traces of biological fluids.

"Scalps removed from animals which have consumed 1080 or strychnine baits will not be accepted due to human health concerns."

Have you, or do you know someone who has been a bounty hunter and traded in scalps? Email heidi.petith@news.com.au


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