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26 November, 2020

Local waterways croc infested

A REPORT tabled at last week’s Mareeba Shire Council meeting confirmed that there is current evidence of saltwater crocodiles living in both Two Mile Creek and Lake Mitchell, just outside of Mareeba.

By Rhys Thomas

CROCS: An Ariel shot of Lake Mitchell just outside of Mareeba which has been confi rmed to house at least 23 saltwater crocodiles. PHOTO SUPPLIED.

A REPORT tabled at last week’s Mareeba Shire Council meeting confirmed that there is current evidence of saltwater crocodiles living in both Two Mile Creek and Lake Mitchell, just outside of Mareeba. 

The survey was conducted by Top End Crocodile Service (TECS) three years ago into the suspected presence of saltwater crocodiles in these areas. 

 At the time they had identified 23 crocodiles between the lengths of 50cm to 1.5m within these areas. 

Brodie Moloney Owner and Operator of TECS said that there is not much distance between Two-Mile Creek and the Barron River for a crocodile to travel in the wet season. 

“We found evidence of saltwater crocodiles in Two-Mile Creek and Lake Mitchell, the Barron River lacked any evidence of saltwater crocodiles inhabiting it,” he said. 

“When it floods you’ve only got about 500m between some of those cane fields near Two- Mile Creek and the Barron River.

“There is still a decent possibility of saltwater crocodiles crossing into the Barron River during the wet season.” 

MSC Mayor Angela Toppin said Council would continue to advocate for the removal of the saltwater reptiles found in the Two-Mile Creek and Lake Mitchell areas. 

“It is concerning that there are saltwater crocodiles in the Two-Mile Creek and Lake Mitchell areas and Council will continue to lobby the relevant government departments to take appropriate action to remove these animals,” she said. 

“They are not naturally found here and should be removed. 

“The State Government needs to move quickly before the reptiles mature and start re- producing.” 

TECS conducted a second survey into the Barron River at both the bridge on Henry Hannam Drive at Mareeba and the Barron Falls at Kuranda and found no evidence of Saltwater Crocodiles. 

A small population of freshwater crocodiles were found in the Barron River and the Tinaroo Creek weir, the report suggests that while it is a breeding population the survival rates of both eggs and hatchlings would be incredibly low. 

Member for Cook Cynthia Lui was contacted for comment but did not reply.


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