Mown Birds – The Border Watch
MORE than 20 corellas have been mowed down while foraging by a regional road, leaving wildlife keepers and residents in shock.
Last Thursday and Friday evening, Mount Gambier wildlife warden Julia Dangerfileld was called to O’Niel Road, Worrolong, following reports of more than 20 corellas dead on the natural strip.
Ms Dangerfield said she was called to the scene after residents found one of the birds seriously injured but still alive but died before help arrived.
“There was a resident coming out of her driveway and she saw a ute deliberately deviate from the road and enter a herd of corellas, killing them,” Ms Dangerfield said.
“The residents were in absolute shock because they really love the birds, they feed and care for them, so having them mowed is devastating.”
Ms Dangerfield said she understood birds often flew past cars and were susceptible to being accidentally hit, but it was reported that this was not the case.
“This car drove on the natural track to purposely hit these birds and locals say the birds that nest here hardly ever fly past the cars along the road,” she said.
“Once it cut them down, the car then hit the road and kept driving.”
After the first incident on Thursday night, Mr Dangerfield said she received another call around the same time on Friday with residents upset that it had happened again.
“In the two nights I counted over 20 birds and I think it would have been more because maybe some flew off and fell in the tall grass or something like that,” he said. she declared.
âI understand why people think of corellas as a pest and they’re actually an agricultural pest, but the birds here didn’t bother the residents and many of them actually took care of the birds.
âSwerving all the way to hit animals is dangerous enough, and people who do so leave injured animals by the side of the road as well. “
A spokesperson for the Environment and Water Department said intentionally running over protected wildlife was likely to be an offense under the National Parks and Wildlife Act.
“Penalties of up to $ 100,000 or two years imprisonment may apply and similarly, intentionally crushing an animal may constitute an offense under the Animal Welfare Act, punishable by a maximum penalty of up to $ 50,000 or 4 years in jail, “the spokesperson said.
“People can apply for a permit to destroy wildlife where protected animals cause or are likely to cause damage to the environment or to crops, livestock or other property, including structures built or pose a risk. for safety or danger to people or industry.
âDestruction of protected wildlife must be undertaken in accordance with the Code of Good Practice for Humane Destruction, for birds, shooting is the only method of destruction permitted. ”
Anyone with information on the suspected illegal killing of protected wildlife should contact the National Parks and Wildlife Service on Mount Gambier number 8735 1177, Naracoorte number 8760 120, or file a report on the Department of the Environment website and some water.