Stray sta­tion cat­tle killed

Pilbara News - - Front Page - Tom Zaun­mayr ■

Vis­i­tors to sta­tions are be­ing urged to open their eyes af­ter a string of dead cat­tle were found over sev­eral weeks on a Pil­bara pas­toral lease due to gates be­ing left open.

Kar­ratha Sta­tion man­ager Dave Ruther­ford re­ported he had lost six cows to trucks and trains in the past month, some of which had to be put down af­ter be­ing found alive but in pain.

“(Putting an­i­mals down) is a part of the job we have to do, but it’s not pleas­ant,” he said.

“When you find them and they’ve been ly­ing there in pain all smashed up and twisted for hours, it’s not nice.”

Frus­trat­ingly, one of the gates left open has highly vis­i­ble signs in­form­ing vis­i­tors to call be­fore en­ter­ing and to close gates when ac­cess­ing the prop­erty.

“I don’t know what else you can do, put a per­son stand­ing on each gate?” he said.

“I don’t think it’s a high per­cent­age of peo­ple do­ing it, but it does hap­pen fairly reg­u­larly.”

Last year, sev­eral pas­toral­ists along the North West Coastal High- way spoke to the Pil­bara News about prob­lems with gates be­ing left open and fences be­ing de­stroyed.

Mund­ab­ul­lan­gana Sta­tion man­ager Michael Thomp­son locked the gate to Boodarie Sta­tion along the south side of the Turner River in re­sponse to th­ese is­sues.

Mr Thomp­son said lock­ing the gate had helped, but not solved, prob­lems as­so­ci­ated with rub­bish, tres­passers and shoot­ing.

“It has helped cur­tail the rub­bish, but has also prob­a­bly re­stricted a lot of in­no­cent peo­ple who go to Munda and Boodarie Sta­tions and do the right thing, which does sad­den me,” he said.

“For them I re­ally do feel sorry,

but it has def­i­nitely helped Munda and Boodarie.”

The com­plaints come as Greens Mem­ber for Min­ing and Pas­toral Robin Chap­ple ramps up crit­i­cism of the State Govern­ment’s al­leged in­abil­ity to re­duce stray­ing live­stock on north­ern high­ways.

Mr Chap­ple said an ad­vi­sory group set up to man­age stray­ing live­stock had so far failed to al­le­vi­ate the is­sue.

Ngar­luma Abo­rig­i­nal Cor­po­ra­tion, which runs Kar­ratha Sta­tion and the ad­ja­cent Mt Wel­come Sta­tion, failed to re­spond by the time of go­ing to print.

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