Breeding and training dogs for species conservation and feral animal control programs

Latitude 42 runs a breeding program that strives to develop Labrador retrievers that are ideally suited for detection work. The program includes breeding, rearing. training and supplying high quality detection dogs for use in species conservation programs and feral animal control programs.

Detector dogs play an important role in conservation work throughout the world. For example, they are used extensively in New Zealand to assist researchers locate threatened species such as kiwis, kakapo and waterfowl to estimate population size, detect nest sites, or indicate where animals are for mark-recapture or fitting of telemetry equipment. They also have a role to play in feral animal control programs, such as those currently in place to eradicate cats, rabbits and rats from many oceanic islands

We train our dogs to find scats of target animals, which can be used to confirm species presence, evaluate and monitor population density and physiological health, and understand resource selection by animals. Dogs trained to locate scats of a particular species have been shown to detect animals more effectively than traditional methods, such as hair snares, scent stations, and camera traps, and they are particularly effective in detecting wide-ranging, elusive, or rare species.