News

Spot the freshwater crocodiles in Baffle Creek

BIG GIRL: One of the larger female crocodiles nicknamed Karli on the banks of Baffle Creek and a Gippsland Water Dragon in the foreground. Photo: contributed
BIG GIRL: One of the larger female crocodiles nicknamed Karli on the banks of Baffle Creek and a Gippsland Water Dragon in the foreground. Photo: contributed contributed

AS PART of his ongoing research into fresh water crocodiles in Baffle Creek, a CQuniverity student has started swimming and interacting with them in their environment.

In January, the NewsMail reported that environmental science student Leslie Lowe had set up infrared cameras along the Baffle Creek area to establish habitat range and population sizes of the Johnson fresh water crocodiles.

Mr Lowe said to date, 50m was as close as he had been able to get to the crocodiles.

"The plan is to get them used to my scent and presence so they will not perceive me as a threat," he said.

"The larger ones can be a little territorial especially in breeding season (August), but are generally very shy and evasive.

"It is an absolute rush getting in the water with these beauties."

Mr Lowe said he had not located any detrimental introduced species of fish such as Carp Tapia - which were decimating some of our river systems.

"This highlights the beneficial effect of introducing an aquatic apex predator into the food chain, maintaining balance and biodiversity within the ecosystem."

"Research at Yellowstone Park in the United States has proven the beneficial effects of reintroducing an apex predator the Timber Wolf which helps by removing feral animals from the ecosystem."

Mr Lowe said the Gippsland Water Dragon (pictured) could form part of the diet of fresh water crocodiles although they preferred insects and crustaceans at an early age and size before moving up to larger fish and birds.

"That photo also shows what is known as tail thrashing by the 2m female in frame, which helps in body heating but also, seems to attract curious animals like the Water Dragon," he said.

"Lucky he didn't get to close or he might have ended up as lunch."

Mr Lowe said babies should start hatching this month which would allow him to gleam insight into their nesting behaviours.

"Some of the nests have been raided by feral pigs in the area," he said

"The hatching event will provide more data on numbers and survival rates within the population."
 

Topics:  cquniversity bundaberg crocodile fresh water offbeat



How to survive a bushfire in your car

IT SOUNDS like a nightmare, but it can happen.

Eight reasons to join the RFS

SPREAD across 93% of Queensland, the Rural Fire Service has about 36,000 volunteers. And you could be one of them.

What if my insurer gives me grief?

CLAIMING your insurance cover after a natural disaster can go one of two ways. It can be a breeze, or like pulling teeth.

Learner drivers given helping hand with new app

A pilot of the innovative AAMI SmartPlates app is underway with more than 100 learner drivers.

The AAMI Smartplates App pilot program will run until January 2017

Local Partners

David Attenborough on facing his mortality

Sir David Attenborough in a scene from the TV special The Death of the Oceans.

Life without Sir David Attenborough is hard to imagine

Goooodbye Hamish and Andy (from our radios)

Hamish and Andy

The pair have been on air since 2006

Saying "I do" changed Shia's outlook on marriage

Shia LaBeouf has a new outlook on marriage since he tied the knot.

Singer tunes in to first movie role

Tori Kelly voices the character Meena in the movie Sing.

Musician Tori Kelly voices Meena the teenage elephant in Sing

Cricketing greats bring Aussie mateship to commentary box

Cricket commentator Adam Gilchrist.

ADAM Gilchrist enjoys the fun of calling the Big Bash League.

The dead help solve the case

Debut novel delivers on wit, violence and shock

Chinese locked out of Australian property market

The rules are different if you're a foreigner

The buyer was from China - the trouble started right there

Morrison signs off on new affordable rental model

Australia's Treasurer Scott Morrison speaks during a press conference after a meeting of the Council of Federal Financial Relations at Parliament House in Canberra, Friday, Dec. 2, 2016.

Scott Morrison signed off on development of a new financing model

Coast high-flyer's fight back from bankruptcy, $72m debt

Scott Juniper went from millionaire developer to declaring bankruptcy in2012, now he is back on top of his game again with new developments including this one in Coolum.

'Apocalyptic lending storm' causes financial collapse.

How your home can earn you big $$$$ this Christmas

This luxury Twin Waters home rents out over Christmas for more than $6000 a week.

Home owners earning thousands renting out their homes this Christmas

Ready to SELL your property?

Post Your Ad Here!