DIS­TURB­ING TREND

AU­TOPSY RE­SULTS IN FOR VILE KOALA ACT

The Gympie Times - - FRONT PAGE - Frances Klein

RSPCA has con­firmed the re­sults of an au­topsy on a koala found screwed to a post in a re­gional lookout point on Wed­nes­day.

Or­gan­i­sa­tion in­ves­ti­ga­tor Peter Beatty said re­sults showed the koala was hit by a car and al­most cer­tainly dead be­fore it was at­tached to the post at Brooloo Park.

“In all prob­a­bil­ity it was dead be­fore it was at­tached to the gazebo,” Mr Beatty said.

“There was no blood flow from where it was at­tached.”

He said the au­topsy showed the koala suf­fered trauma to the head and liver, and had frayed claws which was ev­i­dence of be­ing hit by a car, be­cause the body was dragged on the road.

The RSPCA in­ves­ti­ga­tor still slammed the act against the pre­vi­ously healthy male koala as de­fy­ing be­lief.

Ev­i­dence also sug­gested the an­i­mal was dumped in the bush for a few days be­fore be­ing re­trieved and dis­played so vi­o­lently, he said.

“It could have been dead for two or three days,” he said.

The “sick joke” was part of a grow­ing trend in sum­mer, Mr Beatty said.

“At this time of year, ev­ery year, re­ally dis­turb­ing acts seem to sur­face,” he said.

“For some rea­son the sum­mer hol­i­days seem to spark real acts of an­i­mal cru­elty.”

He said the RSPCA could not pros­e­cute any­one in­volved for the treat­ment of the koala’s body un­der the An­i­mal Care and Pro­tec­tion Act, but it was con­tin­u­ing in­ves­ti­ga­tions.

He said the RSPCA dealt with more than 23,000 na­tive an­i­mals call-outs a year, with only 23 in­ves­ti­ga­tors tend­ing to them.

Koala Res­cue Queens­land man­ager Mur­ray Cham­bers, who re­sponded to the call, said the koala had been in the prime of its life.

“I still feel sick in­side; it’s so dis­re­spect­ful of an Aus­tralian icon,” Mr Cham­bers said.

PHOTO: CON­TRIB­UTED

SHOCK­ING: An au­topsy photo of the koala’s paw. The car­cass was found screwed with metal screws to a post in Brooloo Park on Wed­nes­day.

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