‘We want to claim back our waterways’: QLD’s renewed crocodile cull push
Katter’s Australian Party is pushing for a targeted crocodile culling program to be rolled out in Queensland.
The party has proposed a bill aimed at achieving safer waterways for the area, which has anecdotally observed a spike in crocodile sightings. It appears the move may be a popular one, with a Cairns Post survey suggesting 77 per cent of respondents were in favour of a potential cull.
The party’s Shane Knuth says the stakes are too high to delay action any further.
“Something has to be done,” Knuth urges.
“You have just got to look at the figures. At the present moment, far north QLD is infested with crocs.”
“Back in 2010, they had 176 crocodile sightings. Now there is an average of about 828 sightings or potential sightings. On top of that, most people don’t bother to report sightings because they know it’s a complete waste of time.”
Though understanding the conservationist argument and sympathising with calls for the preservation of reptile life, Knuth says crocodile numbers are sending water activities on a downward trajectory.
“Tourism is down. The nipper and lifesaver numbers are also down. Rowing clubs are down. All our water sports, the numbers are down.”
“We want to get back to the point where we can swim. We want to claim back our waterways.”
Knuth says his party’s bill could ultimately facilitate this.
“The bill (would establish) an authority that is supposed to be based in Cairns to manage crocodile numbers through the state of Queensland. It decides how many eggs will be harvested, it authorises the person to take the croc to a croc farm, it also gives permits to cull crocs and ensure the prompt management of crocodiles.”
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