Poisoner could be hit with big fine
THE person responsible for illegally poisoning beach almond trees at Trinity Beach could be facing a fine of more than $2500.
Cairns Regional Council workers yesterday chopped down the three trees on the beachfront at the southern end of Vasey Esplanade, each estimated to be at least 75 years old.
The council has launched an investigation to find out who is responsible for the vegetation vandalism, with the poisoning believed to have occurred in November.
It is understood a person has given information to the council after reading about the damage to the beachfront in the Cairns Post.
A council spokeswoman, however, could not comment on the investigation.
She could only say that under the council’s Local Law, the illegal activity carried a fine of $2611, which could be issued without prosecution.
Trinity Beach residents say the trees helped provide a buffer against the wind and prevented beach erosion.
A large banner stretched between the dying trees asking “who killed the beach almonds?” was allegedly re- moved by a neighbour.
Division 9 Councillor Brett Olds has suggested a billboard to shame those responsible.
It is estimated the replacement beach almonds could take at least a decade to grow to maturity.
Beach almonds (Terminalia catappa) grow on sandy shores across the Indo-Pacific region and are a mangrove-associated species.
The colourful trees provide shade during summer and their fruit is edible — tasting slightly acidic, like almonds.