Residents call for better cane toad management after reports of growing populations

CANE TOAD CONCERNS: Some residents had noticed an increase in cane toad populations around their properties. Photo: AAP
CANE TOAD CONCERNS: Some residents had noticed an increase in cane toad populations around their properties. Photo: AAP

REDLAND residents complaining of rampant growth in cane toad populations are being shifted between council and the state government.

Capalaba resident Jen Kay said she was disappointed in council’s response to the thousands of five-cent-piece sized toads in her yard.

Chrissy Ford, who reported cane toad tadpoles on North Stradbroke Island’s Cylinder Beach, said she was also worried about council’s lack of action.

The complaints come as One Nation senator Pauline Hanson and Queensland MP Bob Katter proposed a collect-a-toad bounty system, putting cane toad management in the spotlight nationally.

Ms Kay said her neighbours had similar experiences of a booming population.

TOAD PROBLEM: One resident noticed a large number of small toads around his home in Capalaba on Christmas eve.

TOAD PROBLEM: One resident noticed a large number of small toads around his home in Capalaba on Christmas eve.

“I don’t think it’s solely council who needs to deal with cane toads when there’s one or two in your yard,” she said.

“But when there is an issue involving this amount of them in multiple yards, and not having a dam or water source next door, then council need to at least attempt to look at the cause.”

A council spokesperson said council had no legal responsibility to control cane toad populations but was involved in management trials.

The spokesperson said residents may have been referred by council to the Agriculture Department, which was responsible for legislation governing invasive animals.

However, an Agriculture Department spokesperson said local governments had to have a biosecurity plan covering invasive plants and animals.

Under state law, cane toads are not a prohibited or restricted invasive animal and the Queensland government has no legal responsibility to control them.

Ms Ford said she had been referred to the state government when she reported the tadpoles at Cylinder Beach to council.

She said she was worried about council’s lack of action.

“My daughter and grandchildren use that beach (and) so does the school,” she said.

“Kids play in and around that muck (the water where the tadpoles were spotted)...

“I think it's ironic that it’s the number one beach (according to) council but they don’t clean it up.”

Under the city’s five-year Biosecurity Plan cane toads are deemed too widespread to eradicate or contain.

The council spokesperson said council was working with the University of Queensland to trial cane toad tadpole traps on private properties this year.

“In relation to trials on public land... there is further evidence needed about its broader application to minimise any adverse impacts,” the spokesperson said.

“Unless measures of control become more effective, it is not feasible to have a large scale eradication or containment program.”