Res­i­dents told to stay away from croc trap

Port Douglas & Mossman Gazette - - NEWS - Madi­son Wil­liams

THE Depart­ment of En­vi­ron­ment and Her­itage Pro­tec­tion (EHP) has urged res­i­dents to stay clear of Fern­dale Lake af­ter a pet dog was killed by a croc­o­dile in the area more than two weeks ago.

Last week the re­ported on Jan Churchill’s “trau­matic ex­pe­ri­ence” of wit­ness­ing her labrador Sam get at­tacked by a croc­o­dile dur­ing a mid­morn­ing walk around the lake. Sam later died from his in­juries.

The at­tack left Ms Churchill fright­ened for other dog own­ers and par­ents of small chil­dren that visit the area.

Since then wildlife of­fi­cers have be­gun work­ing to re­move the 2.5 me­tre croc­o­dile that has been de­clared ‘of con­cern’ us­ing a float­ing trap set with pig meat.

“Res­i­dents and other users of Warri Park are urged to ex­er­cise ex­treme cau­tion in the vicin­ity of Fern­dale Lake and to avoid the area if pos­si­ble while the re­moval oper­a­tion con­tin­ues,” said an EHP spokesper­son.

“It can take some time for croc­o­diles to be­come used to a trap and it is help­ful if hu­man ac­tiv­ity in the area can be min­imised.”

Wildlife of­fi­cers vis­ited the houses of res­i­dents who live close to the lake and urged them to be “CrocWise”.

“Port Dou­glas is well within known croc­o­dile coun­try and mem­bers of the pub­lic are re­minded to al­ways be CrocWise,” said an EHP spokesper­son.

Res­i­dents that fre­quently use the park are un­con­vinced that re­mov­ing the croc is the right op­tion.

Gaye McFar­lan has been walk­ing her dog in Warri Park for six years and is wor­ried it’s only a short-term fix.

“Croc­o­diles are very ter­ri­to­rial crea­tures, I think if you re­move one an­other will just come back,” she said.

The trap set with pig meat in Fern­dale Lake

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