Monday, August 9, 2010

Flying Fox News 10/8/10

Flying Foxes

A petition urging government action on flying foxes in Charters Towers is to be presented to State Parliament next month. Dalrymple MP Shane Knuth, who will present the petition, said a decision by the Department of Environment and Resource Management to refuse permission for Charters Towers Regional Council to use helicopters to clear flying foxes from Lissner Park had been the final straw. "Before they used to use the excuse that we wanted to use lethal means to move the bats and now that we come up with a non-lethal way to move them, they still knock us back. It is a disgrace," he said. DERM wildlife management director Nick Rigby told council he was not satisfied that flying foxes would not be killed or injured while being mustered to another location by helicopter. Mr Knuth said this proved the government cared more for bats than it did for people. "I would like to see the environment minister come here and debate the bat problem any evening at 6pm when they are flying away to feed," he said. Resident Allan Henderson said people had been lining up to sign the petition. "Everyone in town wants them gone. No one can use that part of the park where they roost during the day. There's flying fox excrement all over the picnic tables. It's terrible. Lissner Park has become a bat reserve," he said. Mr Henderson said the people of Charters Towers wanted their park back. * Townsville Bulletin

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