Calicivirus to be released in Council Parks and Reserves

  • News
6th September 2019

This month the Department of Primary Industries and Natural Resources Eyre Peninsula will be releasing RHDV1 K5, a type of calicivirus. The City of Port Lincoln will be participating in the release, targeting areas along the Parnkalla Trail in the Kirton Point area, Puckridge Park, and Flinders Park.

Minister for Primary industries and Regional Development Tim Whetstone said “The virus will combat feral rabbits which continue to have significant impact on our environment and agricultural industries”.

“In the lead up to the release of the virus in September, pet rabbit owners and commercial rabbit farmers should ensure vaccinations for their animals are up to date,” said Minister Whetstone.

“The government wants to destroy pest rabbits but not people’s household pet rabbits nor commercial rabbit herds.”

“The calicivirus vaccine, which is administered by vets, is effective against the RHDV1 K5 strain and will help protect domestic rabbits. Pet rabbits should also be kept enclosed and safely away from contact with wild rabbits and biting insects following the virus release.”

For further information on the upcoming RHDV1 K5 release and how to protect domestic rabbits, visit

RHDV1 K5 is a variant of the existing virus which is already widespread in Australia. It only infects the European rabbit and is not detrimental to humans, other domestic animals or native species.

Council will be erecting signage at the release sites and trails of oats or carrots laced with the virus may be seen in the area. Residents that find any deceased rabbits are encouraged to report them to Senior Natural Resources Management Officer, Ben Tucker on 0428 846 741 or Council, who will collect the bodies for scientific research.

All media enquiries to be directed to the undersigned on 8621 2325 or via email

Stephen Rufus
Chief Executive Officer

Release Date:     6 September 2019