MP pushes creek croc evic­tion

Townsville Bulletin - - NEWS - MORGANNE KOPITTKE

BUR­DEKIN MP Dale Last has called for the re­moval of a crocodile that was seen sun­ning it­self on the banks at Groper Creek last week.

The 5m beast was spot­ted at the pop­u­lar fish­ing spot on the bank op­po­site Health Creek, me­tres from the jetty, by a young fam­ily who were fish­ing in the area.

This week, photos have also sur­faced of a sim­i­lar sized crocodile on the banks of Cape Up­start.

Mr Last said he has called on Queens­land Parks and Wildlife of­fi­cers to take im­me­di­ate ac­tion to have the Groper Creek crocodile re­moved.

“These sight­ings are in­creas­ing and if you talk to lo­cals, salt­wa­ter crocs are be­ing spot­ted fur­ther up­stream in fresh­wa­ter rivers like the Bur­dekin,” said Mr Last.

“It’s a real con­cern that hu­man lives are be­ing put in dan­ger while the En­vi­ron­ment Min­is­ter Steven Miles has com­mis­sioned another au­dit to re­view the Gov­ern­ment’s crocodile man­age­ment plan.”

Mr Last said he un­der­stood crocodile warn­ing signs had not been re­placed in known crocodile habi­tats.

“I have alerted the depart­ment with re­gards to this,” he said.

The Groper Creek warn­ing sign at the jetty hasn’t been re­placed since it was washed away in the last Bur­dekin River flood in March 2012.

“It’s im­por­tant for peo­ple not to be­come com­pla­cent around our wa­ter­ways, par­tic­u­larly dur­ing crocodile mat­ing sea­son,” said Mr Last.

“It’s the height of our tourist sea­son now, so it would be good if lo­cals en­sured the mes­sage was passed on.”

A Depart­ment of En­vi­ron­ment and Her­itage Pro­tec­tion spokesman said the Gov­ern­ment was com­mit­ted to an ev­i­dence- based ap­proach to crocodile man­age­ment

“Coun­cils can re­quest changes to the four crocodile man­age­ment plans while the science is re­viewed,” he said.

FEAR­LESS: Sight­ings of

large crocodiles have in­creased in the Bur­dekin spark­ing calls for prob­lem crocs to be re­moved.

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