Feral camels: a nationally significant pest animal requiring a national management approach.
Managing established pest animals is difficult. The complexity increases significantly when the pest animal is found across the remote arid interior of a continent (Australia), the impacts (both positive and negative) are unclear, and there is a diverse array of affected stakeholders. This paper describes how the generation of primary scientific evidence was critical for the development of a national policy approach (the National Feral Camel Action Plan). The combination of evidence and policy led to the development and implementation of the Australian Feral Camel Management Project. This project offered the opportunity to implement a wide range of management interventions across the affected jurisdictions. The strengths of the Australian Feral Camel Management Project included having high-level support, participation by all affected stakeholders in partnerships, strong governance and a clear project management approach, underpinned by clear policy and scientific evidence. We believe that the evidence-based policy approach used in this project can be used as a template for the management of other established pest animals that are considered to be in need of requiring national coordination.