Council confirms bird cull ‘imminent’

Kate FieldingSouth Western Times

Flocks of corellas across Bunbury will be attracted by food before being trapped with a sling net and shot with a low-powered rifle with a planned cull “imminent”.

Bunbury City Council awarded a contract on behalf of the South West Coordinated Corella Control Group on May 15 after it voted to support lethal action last month.

Flocks of the introduced bird species have been causing havoc across the community through noise, chewing of infrastructure and fouling behaviour.

The declared pests are thought to also be causing adverse effects on native species such as competing with threatened black cockatoos for nesting hollows.

The council moved to take drastic action through the “destruction” of 800 corellas over the next two years following community outcry. According to the council, the cull is set to start immediately and the control period will run until June 30 before a further contract is advertised later this year.

The control activities will be undertaken by qualified and experienced personnel under license from the Department of Biodiversity, Conservation and Attractions and in accordance with the requirements of the WA wildlife conservation and animal welfare acts.

Mayor Gary Brennan said the control program would have a positive effect on reducing the impact of the introduced corellas in the region.

“The local community and business owners have indicated they are fed up with the significant noise and ongoing destruction caused by these pests and will be relieved to know the program is due to start immediately,” Mr Brennan said.

“Without managed intervention the introduced corella population and associated impacts are likely to increase.

“We recognise that the control of corellas will take some time so in the interim we are also trialling short-term strategies to disperse them from damaging key city infrastructure such as bird-scaring kites.”

The council allocated $50,000 to the cull.

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