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Category Archives: crocodiles
TOURISTS WARNED TO KEEP AWAY FROM WATER
MORE PEOPLE WILL BE TAKEN SAY WILDLIFE OFFICERS
In the past 40 years since crocodile shooting stopped, their numbers in northern Australia have exploded. Tourists have been cancelling trips to north Queensland in droves according to the tourist industry, costing the state’s fragile economy millions.
The simple solution is to be seen to do something about continued crocodile attacks and deaths. Yesterday a tourist was attacked near Lizard island, 200 klm north east of Cooktown. This follows the death of a spearfisherman near Innisfail a month ago and several other attacks on swimmers in the north.
The Labor Government just drifts along as if nothing has happened, in fear of the Greens should they as much mention the need to remove or shoot crocs. Green preferences have kept the highly unintelligent, inner Brisbane-based Environment Minister Stephen Miles in his seat, that was recently abolished by an electoral redistribution.
He now faces political oblivion, while the northern population is being defecated on by toxic flying foxes every day and being regularly eaten by crocodiles, they count the days until this dumb animalist is voted out of parliament.
His equally silly counterpart is Jackie Trad, the Deputy Premier, also propped up by Green votes which she has traded off for the deaths of three swimmers in the past 18 months.
These shameful socialists believe animals take precedent over man and do not intend to thin out the runaway crocodile numbers. Meanwhile as the animalists of the ALP plod along Katters Australia Party has drafted a bill for sensible crocodile management to introduced at the next sittings in May.
The KAP bill will be a test of sincerity for One Nation’s newest Member, Steve Dickson who defected from the LNP six months ago. He claimed KAP stole his croc policy, that Bob Katter has been talking about for the past 10 years.
If in fact is was One Nation policy then Mr Dickson should have no problem supporting it. This will be the real litmus test for the electorate still reeling after Pauline Hanson jumped into bed with the Liberals in WA.
Is Steve Dickson still a Liberal?
The KAP has condemned reports this afternoon that the State Government will review new crocodile management plans following an attack on a snorkeller on Lizard Island yesterday.
The man was treated for minor cuts and abrasions to his head after the reptile, estimated to be up to two metres long, attacked him near Watson Creek Inlet.
ABC reported Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk said the incident was concerning and that maybe stricter measures were needed, although she’s ruled out culling.
KAP State Member for Dalrymple Shane Knuth said a review was the last thing Queenslanders needed.
“The time for talk is well and truly over; we need real action in the form of a controlled cull now to put a stop to the attacks, which seem to be multiplying by the day,” he said.
“We do not need a review – we know what the problem is and we demand action.”
State Member for Mt Isa Robbie Katter said the latest attack was the final straw.
“Human safety is paramount and the Government has now run out of chances to evade action; we need to activate a controlled cull as soon as possible,” he said.
The latest development comes just hours after reports of a beheaded crocodile near Innisfail, revealing locals may be taking steps to control crocodiles themselves because the Government is failing to act.
“People are saying this was bound to happen and it will continue if the Government doesn’t do something,” Mr Knuth said.
Following a well-supported consultation tour around north Queensland, the KAP will table legislation next month to allow for a controlled cull in populated areas across Queensland.
Under the legislation, Mr Knuth said crocodiles could be culled or relocated to a crocodile farm, and safari hunting and egg collection initiatives could be set up to create jobs for Indigenous rangers.
In response to a public outcry, Katters Australia Party is drafting legislation to remove or cull crocodiles in northern waterways after a spate of savage attacks on tourists and residents.
The recent death of a spearfisherman and the mauling of a man at Innisfail by crocodiles prompted a series of public meetings called by the Member for Dalrymple Shane Knuth to gauge public support for crocodile removal, culling, egg collection and safari hunting.
Meetings were held last week at Mareeba, Innisfail and Port Douglas.
At the Mareeba meeting Mr Knuth said the attacks had been given international media coverage and tourists were now cancelling visits to the Far North because they were frightened of being attacked by a salt water crocodile.
Former deputy Mayor of Mareeba Shire, Evan McGrath spoke of crocodiles close to the town and how farmers had been menaced by them when checking their water pumps in creeks and channels.
He said crocodiles had been seen in irrigation channels and the Barron River near his farm. “Their numbers are out of control in areas where crocodiles have never been seen before.”
“Enough is enough,” Mr Knuth told a supportive audience of more than 100 residents.
“We have to bring the numbers back under control. Over the past 40 years since croc shooting finished the numbers have exploded and crocs no longer fear man and they have become cheeky and not afraid to attack people or domestic animals.”
A three metre long photo backdrop of a crocodile with a kelpie in its mouth reminded the audience of the audacity and savagery of a crocodile eating a pet dog near Innisfail two weeks ago, greatly upsetting the dog’s young owner.
Supporting the KAP legislation was the Chairman of Cape York Peninsula Land Council Richie Ahmat who suggested a truck load of large crocs should be taken from a local crocodile farm and dropped into the Brisbane River.
“Then we would see some action,” Mr Ahmat quipped.
Former Gulf area cattle station manager Jack Fraser told the meeting the excessive number of crocs in the vast Lower Gulf district were out of hand and should be culled as a matter of urgency.
He said several years ago a large crocodile on a cattle station was found dead on a riverbank. It was cut open to reveal 60 plastic cattle ear tags in its stomach.
“Sixty ear tags represents a loss to the station of about $60,000 worth of stock on today’s market,” Mr Fraser said.
Member for Kennedy Bob Katter received thunderous applause when he stated the obvious: “The Brisbane Government does not care a less about North Queenslanders and it is time we looked after our own problems.
“Home rule is across the world and like Brexit, North Queensland must now take a stance,” referring to a new State of North Queensland.
Member for Mt Isa Robbie Katter said he would present a bill to State Parliament in the May sittings to address runaway crocodile numbers that were of grave danger to the public.
He alluded to making unchecked crocodile attacks a precursor to blocking the May budget should the Labor Government not support his bill.
Meanwhile the Independent Member for Cook, Billy Gordon, did not attend either the Mareeba or Port Douglas meetings held in his electorate.
On his Facebook page after the meetings Mr Gordon claimed he would not be supporting the crocodile removal legislation because he had not been invited to either the Mareeba or Port Douglas meetings.
“The needs of my electorate are quite substantive, the areas of health, education, telecommunications….and tourism are of primary concern to me,” the post said.
“It’s on these issues that hard- nosed negotiations should be had on.
“As a matter of public record I have not been invited to or included in meetings in both Mareeba and Port Douglas to advocate for culling of crocs.”
A KAP spokesman said today Mr Gordon’s office was contacted early on Tuesday morning by staff inviting him to the meeting.
“On Wednesday morning his office put in an apology telling us they were unsure if Mr Gordon would attend,” the spokesman said.
“A meeting flyer was emailed to his office. KAP contacted his staff who said they were unable to send a representative to the meeting.
“KAP staff also left a message on his phone,” the spokesman said.
Mr Gordon is believed to be in Melbourne and was unable to be contacted for comment.
At the Mareeba forum, local Labor Party stalwart Duncan McInnes said most Aboriginal communities and Traditional Owners he had spoken to supported the proposed legislation.
Katters Australia Party will be conducting a series of public meetings beginning Wednesday April 12, at Mareeba, Innisfail and Port Douglas to gauge support for crocodile egg removal and safari hunting legislation to be introduced into the Queensland parliament.
Further meetings will be held at Mossman and Innisfail where salt water crocodiles have attacked humans or animals and menaced tourists over the past few months.
Where: Mareeba Bowls Club, Anzac Avenue at 1.30 to 2.30pm, Wednesday April 12.
Innisfail Senior Citizens Hall, Owen St, Innisfail, 5.30 to 7.30pm, Wednesday April 12
Port Douglas Community Hall, Thursday, 9.30 to 11.30am, Thursday April 13
Bob Katter, Robbie Katter Member for Mt Isa and Shane Knuth Member for Dalrymple will be in attendance.
Member for Dalrymple Shane Knuth has reinforced Bob Katter’s call for an immediate but controlled crocodile cull in north Queensland after a family pet was killed on the weekend in the latest spate of attacks.
Melissa Horton’s family dog Rusty, a one-year-old purebred kelpie, was taken by a croc at the family property at Belvedere, just five kilometres north of Innisfail.
“This image is confronting and frankly heartbreaking for residents who are imagining that dog could have been their beloved pet, or much worse, their child,” Mr Knuth said.
The incident comes just weeks after a horror weekend of crocodile attacks, when a teenager was bitten on the arm in the Johnstone River in Innisfail, and a spearfisherman was killed in a suspected croc attack south of Cairns in mid March.
“Attacks are on the rise, the crocs we’re seeing are big, aggressive and territorial, and crocs are surfacing in places they’ve never been before,” Mr Knuth said.
“People are petrified to get out and enjoy the waterways, even in safe areas, with membership dropping in water sport clubs and iconic events cancelled due to croc sightings.
“Reports show seven beaches have been closed due to croc sightings in the past three months.”
On a recent flight, Mr Knuth said he saw several crocodiles, one as long as 5.5 metres, just below the Burdekin Falls Dam.
He said the recent high rainfall and flooding across the state could lead to even more croc activity and attacks in the near future.
Mr Knuth said failing to take action puts at risk Queensland’s $11 billion tourism industry.
“More than 22 million visitors come to Queensland each year and contribute billions to the state’s economy.
“People come to Queensland to enjoy sunshine and beaches, but the image they’re seeing now is croc attacks and croc signs everywhere; this is a very poor message to promote to international tourism.”
The KAP will draft legislation to allow for a controlled cull in populated areas across Queensland.
Mr Knuth said the animals could be culled or relocated to a crocodile farm, and safari hunting and egg collection initiatives could be set up to create jobs for Indigenous rangers.
Egg collection could also keep an extra few hundred thousand dollars in the Queensland economy that would otherwise be spent interstate.
“Commercial croc farms cannot source eggs from the wild for their breeding programs, meaning some Queensland farms buy their eggs from the NT Government, spending as much as $250,000 a year,” Mr Knuth said.
“It’s time to bring back the balance and prioritise human safety over crocs.”
Two weeks ago an experienced spear fisherman, Warren Hughes, swimming a reasonable distance from the mouth of the Russell River, north of Innisfail, was partially eaten by a 4.3 metre crocodile.
His family and friends are shocked beyond belief because death by crocodile attack is a very unpleasant way to die.
Now it seems this croc had been previously captured by wildlife officers then released because it did not show any signs of aggression. The Russell River is known locally to be crawling with crocodiles and has been for many years.
A prominent and respected professional member of the North Queensland community reported a large crocodile in the Russell River to the Department of Environment in recent months.
KAP Member for Kennedy, Bob Katter’s office has been informed that allegedly the reported crocodile was then trapped by the Department and released again as it did not show aggressive behaviour and was thought not to be a threat. It is said to have measured 4.3 metres.
This croc that attacked the Cairns spearfisherman was shot dead by wildlife officers last Tuesday. Any person living in the far north knows instinctively a crocodile from 500 mm to five metres long is a threat to humans.
This comes just two weeks after the State Government announced its crocodile management plan, where ‘remove and release’ are considered a key feature.
Mr Katter said, “We are saying you need croc culling, whether you put them into farms or whether you shoot them.
“The fundamental failure of the Government is that is has not come to grips with the grave danger to people, human beings from flying foxes and crocodiles. There couldn’t be a worse way to die.
“The way a crocodile kills you is just horrific. Who would impose that danger upon the people of your state?”
“The Government is talking about management programs that will scientifically assess the numbers and monitor and remove… ‘Remove, yeah to where?’ Well, North Queenslanders are laughing.
Seven years ago, a former member of Parliament had a mob of horses running in a leased paddock that fronted the freshwater upper reaches of the Russell River upstream from the Bruce Highway bridge .
There were several mares and foals running in the paddock over 12 months. When the owner came back to get the horses there were no foals and two mares were also missing.
A local farmer said he saw a crocodile attack a foal on the water’s edge so it was not hard to work out what had happened to the other horses.
An Aboriginal community member from Cape York Peninsula told Cairns News a week ago that not only saltwater crocs are in plague proportions but the smaller freshwater crocodile has bred profusely in creeks and rivers on the Peninsula over the past 40 years.
Dozens of ‘freshies’ were counted last year in a small, seasonal waterway just north of the Mitchell River in a nearly dry hole measuring 50 metres by five metres.
This was not normal and their numbers were so high that “not a fish has been left in our creeks and waterholes because the freshies cleaned up the lot,” said the traditional owner.
He said the explosion of crocodile numbers had unbalanced the environment and he doubted the barramundi and catfish numbers would ever be restored.
Mr Katter said he supported crocodile safari hunting run by Aboriginal communities to supplement their dwindling income in areas that once supported thousands of cattle and many jobs for indigenous people.
The Douglas Shire Council at Port Douglas is worried their tourist town will be bypassed by overseas visitors because of large crocodiles found at their beaches. Over the past three weeks three dogs have been taken by crocs while walking along their famous beaches. Late last year a woman was killed by a large croc just north of Port Douglas at Daintree.
Katter snaps on Cape Trib croc attack: “time for croc shooting safaris”
31 May 2016: KAP Member for Kennedy has “snapped” at Member for Leichhardt, Warren Entsch’s response to the Cape Tribulation crocodile attack in which a tourist was eaten. Mr Katter has long called for crocodile culls in Far North Qld and believes crocodile hunting safaris could be a solution:
“Where there is water, human beings will go near or in it. I can’t believe that Warren Entsch is attacking the people over this. Defending crocodiles instead of people is stupid.
“And I’d like to get Mr Entsch to swear on the bible that he hasn’t been in a river or creek in North Queensland. The crocs would take one look at him and they’d be licking their lips.
“We should have professional shooting and hunting safaris working now. Human beings have been hunters for three and a half million years. And you may not like it, but that’s how we got here as human beings.
Mr Katter believes numbers of crocodiles have reached unprecedented levels,
“The numbers of crocodiles have exploded. All of crocodile’s predators have been removed. Nature has a balance and the balance is completely out of whack. Goannas, dingos, humans, there are numerous other predators for the eggs and for the crocodiles themselves. For example, gropers ate all the small crocodiles, but now, there are so many big crocodiles that there are no gropers.
“We can put nature back in balance if we have shooting safaris.”