Residents are being warned not to approach cassowaries following recent sightings in the Redlynch Valley.
Division 6 Councillor Linda Cooper says cassowaries should never be approached as they can be aggressive.
“We are aware of sightings of a male cassowary and his chicks near residential properties in the Redlynch Valley,” Cr Cooper said.
“We live in a truly amazing region and are blessed to have these beautiful birds, but we’re asking residents and visitors to please respect these native animals and do not approach them as they can be aggressive and dangerous, especially if they have young.
“Cassowaries may at times wander from neighbouring rainforest into residential areas, which poses a risk to the birds from vehicles and possible attacks by dogs that aren’t behind fences or on a leash.”
Cr Cooper said Council officers would be patrolling the area to remind people to keep their dogs on a leash.
There are some simple rules to remember if you come across a cassowary:
- Never approach cassowaries. They can injure you or your pet with their large, clawed feet.
- Never approach chicks – male cassowaries will defend them.
- Never feed cassowaries—it is illegal, dangerous and has caused cassowary deaths.
- Always discard food scraps in closed bins and ensure compost bins have secure lids.
- Never stop your vehicle to look at cassowaries on the road.
- Always slow down when driving in cassowary territory.
- Always keep dogs behind fences or on a leash.
If you come face-to-face with an aggressive bird, back away slowly and put something like a tree or a backpack between yourself and the bird, then let it go on its way.
The Department of Environment and Science has signs in the area where the cassowary has been sited.