Crocodile nest given priority
A LARGE saltwater crocodile has been given free rein to hatch eggs on a cane farm near Mossman despite its chief swimming route passing within 80m of a home.
Liza Giudice’s repeated attempts to have the reptile and its nest removed from her property have fallen flat.
Department of Environment and Heritage Protection wildlife officers visited the site but deemed it to be low risk.
“As the nest is on private property with limited potential for public access, the risk to members of the public was found to be low and a decision was made not to relocate the animal and its eggs,” said a letter from the department.
Wildlife officers erected signs warning of a recent crocodile sighting along the fence 20m from the nest and on the inner boundary of the nearby Mossman golf course.
But the crocodile and its brood — expected to hatch in mid-May — will remain. Ms Giudice, who has young children, was appalled by the response.
“The crocodile nest is about 60m from my husband’s floodgate. He has to hop into the water to do any maintenance or repairs on it,” she said.
“At this point, I would not be happy with my husband doing the routine maintenance he needs to do on our farm.”
Ms Giudice said the drain also leading to the nest passed within about 80m of her neighbour’s doorstep.
“He has stressed that he’s not happy either. He can’t go out at night and he can’t let his dog out at night,” she said.
“The response has been ‘don’t touch it, leave it as it is and we will put up a sign’.”
The drain also runs along the back of the Mossman Golf Club. Female estuarine crocodiles reach sexual maturity at about 2.2m length.
Ms Giudice had visited the nest only once, but said officers confirmed it was active. “I’m too afraid to go down there,” she said.
Jabalbina business manager Anthony Czygan with rangers Danica Beveen Reisener, Rickie Burchill and Nigel Minniecon.