When I first moved to Cotterill Ave on Bribie six years ago I thought of all the things I would miss coming from the country. One of the main things was the wildlife we had gained the trust of on our 200 acre Land for Wildlife property. Can you imagine my absolute joy and surprise to look out my front window and see a mob of Eastern Grey Kangaroos grazing the Nature strip in front of my new home?
Featured Image(above): Checking for a Joey
It was such a treat to see them venture out of an evening to graze the roadside. If the skies were overcast they appear in the middle of the day and we soon learnt that if we spoke to them when we ventured out to walk our dogs the roos would stand up have a look at us then pop their heads back down and continue to eat. People driving by stop to look and take photos of them and you can tell by their faces how thrilled and happy the sight of these roos has made them. How spoilt are we to have such magnificent creatures living peacefully beside us.
Before long I found we also had a family of Swamp Wallabies in the neighbourhood, much smaller creatures than their imposing cousins and much more special to see as they are fairly shy animals. They too would graze the sides of the roads but would hop back into the National Park bushland if they saw anyone about. There are Bandicoots that scuttle through the bush and so many birds from the colourful Rainbow Lorikeets and their chatter throughout the day to the eerie sound of the Bush Thicknee (Stone Curlew) through the night. All these wonderful creatures inhabit the bushland and our front yards.
They come and go as they please and my neighbour’s and I love to see and hear them. A few months after I had moved in I was woken by a bang and the sound of a car speeding down the road the dogs were barking telling me there was something amiss. I investigated the bang and found a Kangaroo dead in the middle of the road. Can you imagine my sadness at this event? I was sad over the death of such a magnificent creature. I was sad over the fact that the person who hit it didn’t bother to check it was dead and remove it from the road. I was Angry because this person was speeding!
As good Australians, we all know that roos have the endearing habit of appearing in front of your car. If you are driving slowly enough sometimes you can miss them or they can miss hitting you. Over the last six years, I have seen more and more traffic using Cotterill Ave more speeding cars and more dead or dying Kangaroos, Wallabies, Bandicoots and birds all left for us to move off the road, clean up the mess organize the removal of the dead or more heartbreaking the euthanizing of the injured.
As the development of Bribie Lakes, Gemlife and Solana have progressed the traffic has increased. The amount of cars speeding has gone from the occasional car to 90 per cent of the traffic and the death rate is rising. I have tried to wave down cars to get them to slow down the drivers either wave back at me or do not even see me standing on the side of the road as they pass by doing 80KPH or more.
Despite the signage, no one seems to realize that Cotterill Ave is 50KPH and if you are smart at night you will do 40KPH with high beam on. The facts are our mob of kangaroos along Cotterill Ave has gone from over a dozen down to three. There are two less Swamp Wallabies this week alone and these losses are not sustainable. In six years I have seen only one person stop to remove the animal they hit. The dozens of other animals have been left for us locals to deal with.
Believe me, it is not pleasant to find a large Kangaroo left in front of your driveway to bleed to death. That is one big sad mess. The law requires you to remove animals you hit from the road and to report injured ones. It is also a kind act to us the locals if you ring the council to have the dead body removed. People need to stop leaving it up to my neighbours and me to clean up their poor behaviour. We are sick of it.
Last three Kangaroos
What hurts is the fact that people that live in our neighbourhood do not care that they inflict this ordeal on someone else. If you cannot cope knock on our door for assistance we would help you deal with it. At the moment we have a very low opinion of what sort of people you are. It is time for people to show some consideration and have some self-respect. Grow up become an adult and take responsibility for your actions.
Bribie is a wonderful place to live made all the more special because of our wildlife. So please slow down and start enjoying all life on this wonderful island. Can you imagine not have the treat of seeing the kangaroos on Bribie? I for one cannot.