Mystery surrounds pelican deaths - found near golf club

BEAUTIFUL BIRDS: Five pelicans have been found dead in mysterious circumstances near the Rockhampton Golf Club.
BEAUTIFUL BIRDS: Five pelicans have been found dead in mysterious circumstances near the Rockhampton Golf Club. Getty Imagesistockphoto

TRAGIC is how Jacqueline Sale describes the sight of five dead pelicans near the Rockhampton Golf Club.

Mystery surrounds the death of the birds, with The Morning Bulletin unable to confirm with authorities in recent days what had happened.

Ms Sale first saw the birds on Wednesday, although she said other golfers had told her about them early last week.

She said four of the pelicans were on Rockhampton Airport land and one on golf club land, visible from the 16th fairway.

"It was just really distressing to see," Ms Sale said.

"I was really sad and very concerned for the rest of the wildlife."

Ms Sale said she felt something had to be done and contacted Rockhampton Regional Council on Wednesday.

When they were unable to help, Ms Sale said she tried to contact the responsible government department but was unable to talk to the right person.

Eventually, she contacted Queensland Parks and Wildlife Services.

Ms Sale said she was told Rockhampton Regional Council had contacted them and they would look into the issue.

The Morning Bulletin was told the birds were removed from the golf club by the Department of Environment and Heritage Protection.

However, a spokesperson for the department said they were aware of the pelicans, but did not collect the birds.

"It appears to be an isolated case and no other reports have been received," the spokesperson said.

"EHP will respond if further multiple bird deaths are reported in the area."

Investigations into causes like avian influenza only automatically start if 10 birds are found dead in one location.

Rockhampton Regional Council said it had been advised of the pelican deaths at Rockhampton Golf Course.

"As required Council has notified the Department of Environment and Heritage Protection for their investigation," a spokesperson said.

The Morning Bulletin contacted the RSPCA, Wildlife Rockhampton, Queensland Parks and Wildlife Services and the Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry for information.

Topics:  dead animals pelican rockhampton golf club

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