'I will go to jail for flying foxes': CQ activist's pledge
DYING and distressed flying foxes are a cause worth going to jail for, animal rights activist Lyn Laskus wholeheartedly believes.
"I will do everything I can in my power to stop it,” the outspoken Emu Park local said of the alleged animal cruelty against a nesting colony in Duaringa.
"Even if it means me doing something illegal, even if it means getting arrested.”
About 43,000 of the protected little red species are roosting on private property in the township, about 100km west of Rockhampton.
But the Central Highlands Regional Council (CHRC) believe less drastic measures can be taken to ensure they are gone from Duaringa just after Easter.
The Queensland Government and Central Highlands Regional Council (CHRC) are investigating human intervention to illegally disperse flying foxes, causing exhaustion and in some cases death.
A dispersal of the local colony this week was cancelled as the flying foxes were too week to fly and find alternative roosting places.
CHRC Communities general manager Daniel Fletcher said an assessment on Thursday found are only about 80 black flying foxes on council land, but 43,000 little red flying foxes on private property.
He explained under council's flying fox management plan, the CHRC do not conduct dispersal activities on private land.
Duaringa property owners will each have to apply for a flying fox roost management permit with the Department of Environment and Science.
The application is free and ensures the activities on private land are approved by the department.
Everyone who wants their bats moved on from their property on April 3 must lodge their paperwork by Tuesday, March 27.
"To make this as easy as we can, a ranger will visit every affected property to help people fill out the form and we've also made the form available here,” Mr Fletcher explained.
Rangers will be in Duaringa on Friday, March 24 and again on Tuesday, March 27.
"If people go off and do their own thing to remove the bats, there's a high chance that the planned dispersal will be unsuccessful,” Mr Fletcher said.
Ms Laskus said Rockhampton volunteer Michelle Kratz last year rescued 400 bats from people's backyards, all from her own pocket.
At the moment, 15 from Duaringa are injured and in her care.
Ms Laskus claims she has been rallying to protect the roost since 2012, and in that time has cared for flying foxes found with bullet holes.