By George Roberts for the National Reporting Team
Updated 6 December 2017
‘The injuries tend to be fairly horrific’
Dr Jon Hanger, a wildlife vet of more than 30 years, said widespread land clearing has devastating effects on koalas and other animals that cannot run or fly away when the bulldozers plough through.
It is common for farmers to use bulldozers to clear large tracts of trees, often by dragging a huge chain between two machines in order to knock the trees over.
Dr Hanger said the method gave wildlife little chance of escaping.
“The injuries tend to be fairly horrific. They’re major traumas, where there’s massive crushing injuries, tearing of limbs [and] intestines ruptured out,” he said.
Dr Hanger said even more damage was done when landholders burnt the felled logs, as seen in the footage of Wombinoo Station, because animals often sought shelter in the log piles.
He said widespread clearing needed to stop.
“When governments permit this broad-scale clearing without knowing how many koalas are there and what the risks are going to be, that’s really getting to a level where we say ‘that’s unacceptable in this day in age’.”
He said he had operated on one koala maimed in land clearing that had its arm torn off.
“If you did that to your cattle dog you’d end up in jail, there’s no doubt about it.”
First posted Thu at 7:20pm