RSPCA Australia recognises the need to control introduced species, such as the fox, to reduce both environmental and agricultural impacts. However, we argue that the control methods used should be as humane as possible. The available evidence on the effect of 1080 on affected species indicates that it is not a humane poison.
The RSPCA has campaigned over many years for further research into alternatives to 1080 so that it can be phased out and replaced with more humane alternatives. In 2016, a new type of lethal bait containing para-aminopropiophenone (PAPP) was approved for use for wild dog and fox control. It is currently available in several states, with other states expected to follow in the near future. Further work is being undertaken for the use of PAPP against feral cats. PAPP causes haemoglobin levels in affected animals to drop dramatically, reducing the amount of oxygen in the bloodstream, leading to lethargy and weakness followed by loss of consciousness and death. Detailed information on the use of PAPP for wild dog and fox control can be found at the PestSmart website.
While 1080 continues to be used, RSPCA Australia advocates that any baiting programs are carried out in accordance with the codes of practice (COPs) and standard operating procedures (SOPs) produced by the NSW Department of Primary Industries and funded by the Australian Government. You can read more about best practice management of different species at the links below.