Central and North Burnett Times - - NEWS -

Sap­per Matthew Muir

SAP­PER Muir lives in Bris­bane not far from the bar­racks with Ex­plo­sive De­tec­tion Dog (EDD) Raven, his black kelpie who re­tired four weeks ago. “Raven is a lit­tle bit too smart for her own good and got a bit bored of it,” Sap­per Muir said. “You can’t rely on her to find ev­ery­thing, or she will find it and not let on – she still wants to play.” The bond Sap­per Muir shares with Raven is clear. “She’s a lit­tle bit of a princess, I can tell you! “She’ll get a bit of a bindy in her foot and hop over to me to get it out.” Sap­per Muir’s other EDD, Jim or ‘Jimbo’, is a two-year-old pure bred border col­lie that lives at the bar­racks.

EDD Raven

Raven, 7, is a work­ing dog and proud of it. Work­ing dogs and hunt­ing dogs are trained to be­come Ex­plo­sive De­tec­tion Dogs, to de­tect the scent of ex­plo­sives and am­mu­ni­tion. “Their work­ing life is nor­mally eight to nine years, but the work­ing life de­pends on the dog,” Sap­per Muir said. “One went to 12 years, and also loves it; they still take her in now and then.”

War­rant Of­fi­cer I Graeme Na­gle

PROUD to be a mem­ber of the Sec­ond Com­bat Engi­neer Reg­i­ment, WOI Graeme Na­gle has served in the army for 26 years. With ex­pe­ri­ence serv­ing in Solomon Is­lands, East Ti­mor and Iraq, he plans to “stay with the army long enough to have a re­ward­ing ca­reer”. “I’ve taught five train­ing teams in Iraq about ex­ploded and un­ex­ploded de­vices,” WOI Na­gle said. “In Afghanistan, for ex­am­ple, the Ex­plo­sive De­tec­tion Dogs will be used in front of the Bush­mas­ter (troop car­rier) with the han­dler to look for im­pro­vised ex­plo­sive de­vices.”

Sap­per Brian Can­ning

SAP­PER Can­ning, new to 2CER, re­cently trained as a dog han­dler. “I’ve spent 12 months learn­ing the role at school and have been with 2CER since the begin­ning of the year,” he said. “Prior to be­ing a dog han­dler, I was in Afghanistan on Men­tor­ing Task Force 2 as a hand searcher or ba­sic engi­neer searcher.”

EDD Sonic

SER­VICE in Afghanistan is an ex­pe­ri­ence that EDD Sonic shares with han­dler Sap­per Can­ning and War­rant Of­fi­cer I Na­gle. WOI Na­gle said dogs get stressed in com­bat sit­u­a­tions too as they have “hu­man re­ac­tions”.

Sap­per Can­ning added the work­ing dog char­ac­ter traits al­ways come through.

“You can read the dog’s per­son­al­ity when scared or fright­ened, but it’s a game for them – like look­ing for a ten­nis ball. They fix­ate; it’s what they’re out there for.”


SPE­CIAL DAY: RSL Her­vey Bay pres­i­dent John Kelsey (left) and John Smee cel­e­brat­ing Gayn­dah RSL's new units and the ded­i­ca­tion of Ja­cob Moerland Close.

The un­known sol­dier stands guard at the open­ing of Gayn­dah RSL's six new liv­ing units.

Sec­ond Com­bat Engi­neer Sap­per Daniel Da­leris served with Sap­per Ja­cob Moerland, who he de­scribed as "a bit of a lar­rikin" with "a pretty big per­son­al­ity".

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