Dingo attack terror: ‘They just kept coming’

 

A pack of four dingoes "wanted blood" as they mauled six-year-old Michael Schipanski and tried to drag him off, in the latest horror wild dog attack on Fraser Island.

The boy's father Mark Schipanski exclusively told The Courier-Mail how it took "just ten seconds" for the attack to unfold at the World Heritage-listed tourist destination.

His brave son told him, "I did what you told me, Dad. I stopped, but they just kept coming for me".

The family-of-four had been for a swim and were heading up the coastal sand dune off the beach to their Wongai campsite on Saturday about 5.30pm.

Michael was running up the hill with his mum when the wild dogs struck out of nowhere.

"The pack of dingoes saw him and went straight into the chase-and-kill instinct. They wanted blood,'' the father-of-two said.

"I heard him screaming, bone-chilling screams of terror and fear and pain, and turned around and saw him set upon and dragged down by this pack of dingoes.

"It was out-of-control, vicious, terrifying.

"He has severe puncture wounds, bite and teeth marks, to both his legs.

"One dingo had him by the leg and was trying to drag him off down the sand."

Michael Schipanski, 6, is recovering in hospital after the dingo attack.
Michael Schipanski, 6, is recovering in hospital after the dingo attack.

Mr Schipanski ran into the attack "screaming, shouting, swearing, kicking", wrenched his boy from the jaws of the dog, lifted him into his arms and chased off the dog pack.

"It was a matter of ten seconds. I hate to think what might have happened if they got to his head or throat.

"They're strong dogs, they're wild animals, they are predators and he was their prey.

"If the attack went on any longer they would have killed him. If it was a matter of minutes instead of seconds, he'd be dead.

"If our other young boy was there, they would've got him too.

"I was so angry, but I was also in so much shock. We washed the blood off his legs, applied first aid, wrapped him in bandages, and then raced up to Eurong."

The RACQ LifeFlight rescue helicopter gets ready to fly Michael Schipanski to hospital after the attack. Picture: RACQ LifeFlight
The RACQ LifeFlight rescue helicopter gets ready to fly Michael Schipanski to hospital after the attack. Picture: RACQ LifeFlight

Mr Schipanski praised the "outstanding" efforts of the paramedics at the township on Fraser Island who treated his son before he and his mum were flown by RACQ LifeFlight Rescue helicopter to Hervey Bay Hospital for treatment.

On Sunday, Michael underwent surgery to clean the wounds to prevent the risk of infection and was kept in overnight for assessment.

The family, on a camping holiday from Cairns, had been at the bush campsite for six days where the dingoes had been "skulking around" for the entire stay.

"They were just scoping us all out the whole time," Mr Schipanski said.

"When we've come home they were obviously in our camp, scrounging for food, and they've seen our boy running up the sandhill.

"That was enough to send them into attack mode."

A dingo on the beach at Fraser Island. Picture: Kingfisher Bay Resort
A dingo on the beach at Fraser Island. Picture: Kingfisher Bay Resort

He said he was furious at reports that other campers had been feeding the wild dogs.

"There are signs everywhere that say 'don't feed the dingoes'," he said.

Last July, a dingo was captured and euthanised after two separate attacks on a woman and child near the latest incident on Fraser Island.

Camping areas at Wongai, One Tree Rocks and Cornwells were closed by park rangers at the time for more than three months to reduce the risk of dingo and human interactions.

In 2001, a child was killed and his brother mauled by dingoes on Fraser Island, the only recorded fatal dingo attack since the 1980 disappearance of baby Azaria Chamberlain at Ayers Rock.



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