Wallaby worries sent to RSPCA
CONCERNED wildlife campaigners have lodged a complaint with the RSPCA over the handling of an agile wallaby population near the Bluewater housing development at Trinity Beach.
The complaint comes two months after a Cairns Regional Council ecology report recommended the marsupials be left alone, tranquillised and moved, exclusion fencing installed, a wildlife corridor established or culled.
No decision has been made on their future yet with the council saying it was the state’s responsibility and the state saying it was still waiting for direction from the council.
Cairns Coastal Wallaby Protection Society president Geoff Holland said relocation of wallabies was a last resort and more needed to be done to protect the existing population.
“Wallabies need space and, if they don’t get the space, they’ll get stressed,” he said.
“We need a population count done on an annual or biannual basis so we know what’s happening. What we want in this crisis is land.”
Fellow member Tanya Jones lodged the RSPCA complaint against Brookfield Residential Properties and said wallabies were being forced out on to Captain Cook Highway, not towards Earl Hill or Smithfield Recreational Reserve as per a wallaby management plan prepared for the developer by Biotropica Australia.
Division 9 Councillor Brett Olds said a decision had to be made.
“As far as council was concerned the developer was meeting obligations,” he said.
“The only thing realistically which can be done is to relocate them. The developer probably just has to bite the bullet and pay to relocate them.”
A Department of Environment and Heritage Protection spokeswoman said agile wallabies were protected and said it had provided advice to the council regarding its options for managing the wallabies under Queensland nature conservation laws.
The Cairns Post did not receive a response from the developer before deadline.
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