Thursday, June 11, 2009

cockies wreak havoc

report from the roundtable – 9th June

As reported in an earlier
blog story the cockatoos have been relentlessly chewing their way through public and private property at an alarming rate. The damage seen at Kallista Village Green over the space of a couple of weeks has been extraordinary.

In an effort to raise awareness and seek much needed assistance from the State Government I moved the following motion:
That Council urgently convene a meeting of local MP’s, Agencies, Shire Officers and interested Councillors to discuss the management of cockatoos so as to reduce ongoing damage to private and public property.

There is no doubt that this is a State Government responsibility as it involves the management of Australian native wildlife. The situation has become untenable with residents facing large repair bills every year due to cockatoo damage.

There is an intrinsic link between feeding cockatoos and cockatoo damage, confirmed by the DSE’s cockatoo expert, Ian Tenby. After last year’s attack from cockatoos the Shire embarked on an education program. This may have worked to a small degree, however whilst large numbers of cockatoos are being fed, particularly at Grant’s Picnic Ground (in a national park no less), we will continue to see damage across the region.

We need the State Government to take responsibility. At the moment it is not illegal to feed the cockatoos (or any native wildlife for that matter), this is something that needs to be urgently addressed, no longer can we accept the continued damage to buildings and our natural assets as cockatoo populations explode out of all proportion.

Native bird feeding has been stopped in other national parks due to problem wildlife, Wilson’s Promontory is a good example of this. This needs to happen here, how much longer can residents endure the annual attacks to property, forking out hefty amounts to replace chewed timber, mortar and all manner of fixtures. How resilient is our forest to the continued chewing of trees and tree ferns.

I know that many residents also get pleasure out of feeding the birds, but given the extreme damage the cockatoos cause this must stop, they have become a problem that is well out of hand.

I am pleased to say that the motion was supported unanimously and I look forward to a positive way forward from our local MPs.

Note: the photos in this entry were taken on Tuesday 9th June, 2009.

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