Battle on to stop spread of toads
NEW ways to manage cane toad populations are to be trialled in the Torres Straits after the toxic amphibians spread further across remote region’s islands.
Cane toads have become well-established on Thursday and Horn islands, but in recent months there have been sightings of the invasive species on Prince of Wales and Badu islands and unconfirmed reports of the toxic animals on Warraber Island.
The Torres Strait Regional Authority has asked James Cook University researchers to come up with strategies, including a prototype trap, to prevent toads from spreading.
The work is being funded through the Queensland Government. TSRA chairman Pedro Stephen said the authority was working with the scientists to develop sensitive DNA detection techniques that would allow them to detect a range of invasive species, including cane toads, simply by sampling waterways.
They were also working with Sea Swift and Ports North to prevent toads from being moved around via shipping.
“We urge the community to check their shipments for cane toads, when travelling between the islands, especially if they have come from locations where cane toads are present, such as Cairns, Thursday Island and Horn Island,” he said.
“It is imperative that the cane toads do not migrate from Thursday Island and Horn Island to the outer islands.”
INVADERS: Cane toad collection in Torres Strait. Picture: TSRA