21 May, 2023
Knuth demands action on crocs
A QUEENSLAND Crocodile Authority should be created and established in Cairns to manage crocodile populations in the north, according to Member for Hill Shane Knuth.
Mr Knuth said Katter’s Australian Party (KAP) had been long-term advocates for significant changes to the management plan to tackle the exploding crocodile population in North Queensland.
“As we already know, North Queenslanders simply cannot trust governing from Brisbane on issues that need to be fixed locally,” he said.
“I don't hear of too many crocodiles in the Brisbane River or on the Sunshine or Gold Coast, so it makes sense for the QCA would be established in Cairns to self-manage the issue and proactively pursue programs to keep numbers in control and reduce the risk of attacks.
“Even a State Government commissioned independent panel recommended, over nine months ago, the ‘annual removal of a number of 2.4m-plus crocodiles in Queensland's populated east coast for several years, in addition to problem crocodile removal,’ however nothing has been done.”
Mr Knuth says he will be tabling the KAP's Crocodile Control and Conservation Bill 2023 into Parliament this year which would seek to establish the Queensland Crocodile Authority.
The organisation would administer all programs related to crocodile management, with an advisory committee established to represent indigenous communities, tourism businesses and other related stakeholders.
Mr Knuth said the move was necessary, given the crocodile population was “exploding” in North Queensland with constant reports of crocodiles on popular beaches, inland waterways and around boat ramps.
“We acknowledge we are never going to completely eliminate the threat, but we can reduce the threat through annual, controlled, concentrated removal programs to limit the frequency of crocodile attacks in well populated areas, making it safer for people to use our waterways and beaches,” he said.
“North Queenslanders just want management that gives us back our popular beaches and waterways and that always seems to exclude any program on controlling crocodile numbers."
KAP State Leader and Member for Traeger Robbie Katter firmly believes Queensland’s crocodile populations should be controlled and, in some instances, culled, similarly to how kangaroos, wild dogs, cats and horses are managed.
“The fact that you can cull dogs, cats, horses, pigs and kangaroos but not man-eating crocodiles is the height of environmental madness,” he said.
“The answer to this is simple – we need to control the numbers. We don’t advocate going overboard but thinning them out will absolutely make a difference."