WHY BE BUL­LIED BY CROCS IN PLACES WHERE WE USED TO SWIM?

Port Douglas & Mossman Gazette - - NEWS -

Not only are there out of con­trol crises with crocs and stingers, we now have some­one who doesn’t even live in our Shire telling me­dia and tourists to go to the Gold Coast! Se­ri­ously? That was the most ir­re­spon­si­ble quote! What right does he have to tram­ple on one of the most iconic ar­eas in the world!

I came here 25 years ago and have watched my off­spring safely en­joy swim­ming at Cooya, Newell, Cow Bay and Port.

Dain­tree is croc coun­try and their sanc­tu­ary which we em­brace. Why should we be bul­lied by the crocs in ar­eas that were once deemed safe to swim?

I have so many tourists ask me, that they are con­fused why there is a croc warn­ing sign next to the pub­lic beach and can they swim be­fore and af­ter the surf life guy isn’t on duty!

What would you say? I have no idea, so look like a fool as it feels wrong to ex­plain, don’t be an id­iot there’s 4 me­tre crocs in there all the time!

It’s time we grew some balls and re­alise we have now run out of time re­gard­ing what to do but get a date set and cull the crocs over 2.5 me­tres or what­ever.

I’m sick of hear­ing, one will take its place .... Then shoot it!! The whole Shire is doomed if we don’t act now. It will have a domino ef­fect.

Julie O’Gor­man, Moss­man

their win­ter hol­i­day and if Port Dou­glas can­not pro­vide this they will choose an­other warm lo­ca­tion that does! Num­bers will de­cline, high sea­son stays will shorten, and our thriv­ing tourism will be in deep do-do. And in a few years, it will not just be our re­peat guests go­ing to the Gold Coast, it will be those in our tourism in­dus­try hav­ing to re­lo­cate for work.

So what to do? Your sug­ges­tion of clos­ing Four Mile Beach to swim­ming un­til a so­lu­tion is found is not it – once Four Mile Beach is per­ceived as be­ing croc­dan­ger­ous, this per­cep­tion will linger for years even if an ace so­lu­tion is found. A la­goon is ar­guably a good idea (es­pe­cially if a salt­wa­ter la­goon on Four Mile Beach) par­tic­u­larly in boost­ing low sea­son. How­ever a la­goon will not be suf­fi­cient to sus­tain our profit mak­ing high sea­son as high sea­son guests want to freely swim on a safe beach. And do­ing noth­ing is not a so­lu­tion – the crocodile pop­u­la­tion is in­creas­ing (along with the size of them) and there­fore so is their pres­ence in pub­lic places.

It is said that the is­sue is com­pli­cated. It is not. We ei­ther re­duce and main­tain the crocodile pop­u­la­tion and there­fore re­duce their risk to that of 10 years ago (and we have the same re­lo­ca­tion plan as Cairns). Or Four Mile Beach and other lo­cal beaches are closed for swim­ming and our tourism in­dus­try faces the dire con­se­quences. Do we put the liveli­hoods of those de­pen­dent on tourism in­come first or the croc­o­diles!?

No one, me in­cluded, likes the idea of killing or re­lo­cat­ing any liv­ing be­ing and whole is­sue is hard for many. I re­spect that. How­ever, no one seems to have a prob­lem that our iconic kan­ga­roo pop­u­la­tion is con­trolled to pro­tect our farm­ing in­dus­try but when our tourism in­dus­try is about to be dec­i­mated by an in­creas­ing rep­tile pop­u­la­tion (which the ma­jor­ity of our guests to our re­gion and scared and re­pulsed by) the po­lit­i­cally cor­rect talk is one of bal­anc­ing the needs of rep­tiles and hu­man be­ings.

It is be­com­ing very clear that the gov­ern­ment of the day is go­ing to close our beaches to swim­ming rather than re­duc­ing the threat of croc­o­diles. This ac­tion is im­mi­nent and af­ter one high sea­son the dam­age will start and once started will be very hard to stop.

Wendy Cross­man, Lo­cal Busi­ness op­er­a­tor for 20+ years

I be­lieve tourists wish to swim at Four Mile Beach, and not in a chlo­ri­nated pool be­side our beau­ti­ful St Mary’s Church with many wed­dings and fu­neral ser­vices which don’t need the fun shouts of a pub­lic pool. Should an EPA re­port be a prob­lem I would ask that the safety of peo­ple and wildlife be con­sid­ered. I would like to see a sea­wa­ter, fine fil­tered pool. Can we do this.

Rhonda Kib­ble, Port Dou­glas

Pic­ture: SHANE NI­CHOLS

En­joy­ing a dip on Four Mile Beach

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