Rural crime costs Queensland farmers millions of dollars every year (Photo: QPS)

July 6, 2020

Police are reminding landholders there are simple ways to reduce rural crime – a problem which costs Queensland farmers millions of dollars annually in revenue and lost productivity.

A spokesperson for the Major and Organised Crime Squad (Rural) – formerly known as the Stock Squad – suggested the following strategies to reduce rural crime:


  • Identify stock at an early age with permanent forms of identification (including registered brand, earmarks, ear tags, tattoos or microchips).
  • Cross brand any bought cattle and maintain records of purchases.
  • Keep receipts of purchases (livestock and equipment) as additional proof of ownership.
  • Grade your boundary fence lines and regularly check stock. Repair damaged fences and gates and immediately report any losses to police.
  • Ensure stock is not left in holding paddocks, loading areas or in isolated areas that are not in sight of your homestead or a neighbouring homestead unless the stock are constantly checked.


  • Secure loading ramps and stockyards to prevent unauthorised use by others.
  • Build stockyards away from the road and in sight of the homestead.

Home and Property

  • Consider security when designing and erecting new buildings, sheds and/or stockyards.
  • Regularly trim trees and shrubs around buildings to prevent concealment of intruders.
  • Ensure building doors and windows are of solid construction and fitted with quality locks.
  • Wherever possible, construct storage facilities within sight of the homestead.
  • Install vandal-resilient external lighting and CCTV cameras around buildings.
  • Inform trusted neighbours when absent from your property.

Machinery and Tools

  • Have a detailed inventory of all your personal, household and farm valuables. Record serial numbers, inscriptions, brands or make and model and other identifying features.
  • Engrave or identify your property, including cattle panels, saddles and tack.
  • Photograph or video your property, particularly stud stock, machinery and those items that are not able to be engraved or marked. Keep in a secured location.
  • Keep farming and machinery tools in a secured area.
  • Never leave ignition keys in or on machinery or property vehicles.
  • Keep fuel tanks, pumps and electric fence units secured and locked at the point of use.


  • Secure firearms and ammunition in accordance with laws and regulations (ie. in a locked and secured gun safe).
  • Never leave firearms in vehicles when the vehicle is not in use.
  • Ensure all firearms are registered, and report any loss or theft to police immediately.
  • Always record who has permission to shoot on your property and report any trespassing to police.

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