Rabbit Proof Fence

Here's How it all Started

Rabbit Proof Fence, Hyden, Western AustraliaIn 1859 Thomas Austin imported 12 breeding pairs of rabbits from Europe to place on his property in Geelong, Victoria. The rabbits were to be used for sport (game hunting) but they soon began to breed out of control. In 1901 a Royal Commission was held into the increasing number of rabbits hopping into W.A. from South Australia.

The Solution

The solution was to build a Rabbit Proof Fence. Construction of this wire fence began in 1902 & was finally completed in 1907. By the time of its completion many rabbits had already hopped into W.A. Two more fences were built at taxpayers expense before the government realised it was a waste of time and money.

The Fence

Rabbit Proof Fence, Hyden, Western AustraliaThe original fence, The State Barrier Fence, is now used mainly to control movement of dingoes, emus & kangaroos. The fence runs for 1,832km & is the longest in the world. The fence runs between Starvation Bay ,west of Esperance, to the Ninety Mile Beach, east of Port Hedland. It is estimated that over 8,000 tonnes of material were used in its initial construction. Many of the posts for the fence were cut from the nearby bushland (where possible!). The south section of the fence passes to the east of Hyden.


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