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Western Shield is the lead wildlife recovery program of DBCA's Parks and Wildlife Service. It is one of the biggest wildlife conservation programs ever undertaken in Australia and aims to return the balance and mix of native animals in selected areas of WA's environment to levels comparable to pre-European settlement. It has a particular focus on threatened species.

Western Shield is working to protect WA's native wildlife through the broadscale control of introduced predators including foxes and feral cats. Baiting of introduced predators has seen increases in the population size and distribution of priority native species including the quokka, western brush wallaby and chuditch. 

Baiting of introduced predators across more than three million hectares of Parks and Wildlife Service-managed land occurs on a regular and ongoing basis. Find out more about our baiting locations here.

Numbat - Photo © DBCA

Why have Western Shield?

Over the past 100 years, more mammals have become extinct in Australia than anywhere else in the world. Since European settlement, Western Australia has had:

  • 11 mammal species become extinct
  • seven species disappear from the mainland but remain on a few offshore islands
  • more than 30 species populations decline significantly or are threatened with extinction.

The native mammals most at risk are easy prey: small and medium-sized animals weighing between 35 grams and 5.5 kilograms.

Adult brushtail possum with young on her back
Brushtail possums - Photo © DBCA

It is not known what the full impact of the loss of these particular species has had on WA's environment. The extinction or decline of any species is of great concern for a whole range of environmental, moral and aesthetic reasons.

Introduced predators such as foxes and feral cats, along with loss of habitat, are key factors in the decline of native mammals, as well as other native animals including ground nesting birds, pythons and other reptiles.

More extinctions seem inevitable unless foxes and feral cats are controlled to protect wildlife. Western Shield is working to achieve this. 

Interested in native wildlife and keen to help out? Visit Western Shield - Camera Watch, an online citizen science webpage where you can volunteer to help the Parks and Wildlife Service understand how our management is working. Simply tell us what animals you see in the images.


Western Shield Action pack

Activities on threatened species

Education resource material for students in Years 4 to 6, developed by our Nearer to Nature program.

Download the  pdfWestern Shield Action Pack7.13 MB.

Find a conservation group

Baiting locations

Fox and feral cat 1080 baiting locations in Western Australia are available for viewing and download as PDFs.

View the fox and cat baiting locations.

Premier's Awards category winner logo 2016

Western Shield recognised for public sector excellence

Western Shield was the joint winner of the Managing the Environment category at the 2016 Premier’s Awards for Excellence in Public Sector Management.


Alcoa, Tronox and Western Areas NL all generously support the program through sponsorships.

Articles in this category:

Title Modified Date
Animals we are protecting Wednesday, 20 March 2019 11:29
Involving the community Tuesday, 10 May 2016 10:13
Managing the threats Monday, 16 July 2018 12:39
Measuring success Tuesday, 23 February 2016 13:32
Rebuilding threatened populations Friday, 25 January 2019 14:08
Western Shield fox and feral cat baiting locations Wednesday, 24 October 2018 13:12