7.3 C
Byron Shire
July 30, 2021

Hooning rife at Black Rocks koala site

Latest News

I’m with you Mandy…

Dominica Coulthurst, Knockrow I’m with you Mandy... all the way. Thanks so much for your Soapbox message last week. Always love...

Other News

Staged rollout change for large OS DA

Plans by a developer to change the staged rollout for a large Ocean Shores subdivision, and nine dwellings on 11 and 13 Warrambool Rd and 9 Bian Crt, Ocean Shores, are now on exhibition on Council’s website.

Cartoon of the week – 28 July, 2021

We love to receive letters, but not every letter will be published; the publication of letters is at the discretion of the online and print letters editors.

The truth about Israel

Danny Wakil, Billinudgel Gareth Smith, you are clearly very passionate, but constantly providing incredibly one-sided opinions, and half-truths get us nowhere...

Mandy Nolan’s Soapbox: A vulnerable freedom

To live in a caring community might sometimes come at the cost of small individual liberties – like wearing a mask in the post office for ten minutes while you complete your transaction.

Sovereign citizens have ‘zero’ legal status in Australia, says former magistrate

Can we really tell authorities we ‘don’t consent’ to rules around mask-wearing, public gatherings or, as was more common before the pandemic, traffic and drug offences, and be excused?

Bangalow health food staff fined for failing to mask-up

Anyone who cannot wear a face mask because of a disability, physical or mental health illness or condition must now carry proof of exemption.

Hoons leave their mark at Black Rocks sports field.
Hoons leave their mark at Black Rocks sports field.

Hooning is back at the Black Rocks sports field, thanks to Tweed Shire Councillors Longland, Byrne, Youngblutt and Polglase who voted against Council’s koala advisory committee’s recommendation for the koala/dog-proof vehicle access gate (which was installed in September 2014) to be locked both day and night except during sporting events.

Instead they voted to allow this gate to be left open during the day even though between June 2013 and September 2014 a permanently locked boom gate was installed to stop hooning and wild parties and to provide increased protection for the resident koala population.

Since then there has been unacceptable increased disturbance to koalas and other resident threatened species, which includes hoon burn-outs and petrol-powered model aeroplanes close to their habitat, and almost 200 golf balls illegally hit across the sports field. It has also made it easy for illegal dog walkers to use the sports field and adjacent bushland as an off-leash dog exercise area. All this during the koala breeding season!

These photos show a recent hooning event where tyre burn-outs tore up turf and gouged numerous deep tracks across the sports field in a 40 metre diameter circle, as well as further damage to the grass verge of the access road where burn-out activity has resumed in previously established hooning ruts. It is unbelievable that decisions are being made to allow such impactive activities to occur within and adjacent to a koala breeding area, koala habitat, a koala corridor and an Environmental Protection Zone.

Sick koala signOn 7 January 2015 the gate was temporarily closed and locked to minimise stress to a sick koala (see photo) sighted adjacent to where hooning is occurring and where another koala has been euthanised due to the stress-related disease Chlamydia.

Hidden away from view of residents and passing traffic, the isolated location of the sports field presents a significant risk to the safety of community members who frequent the site, especially women, children and the elderly.

The ‘trial’ to leave the koala/dog-proof vehicle access gate open during the day has failed. The only solution to minimise the risk to people and koalas is to comply with the above KAC recommendation. The solution certainly is not to remove this gate and allow hoons to enter the site both night and day (as resolved by council at their January 2015 meeting), which will exacerbate the already out-of-control illegal and/or koala-impactive activities at the Black Rocks sports field.

Furthermore, it is a waste of ratepayers’ money for council workers to clean up the mess, as occurred after the recent hooning event.

I urge your readers to ask the above Councillors to lock the gate both day and night by sending an email to [email protected].

David Norris, president Threatened Species Conservation Society

Support The Echo

Keeping the community together and the community voice loud and clear is what The Echo is about. More than ever we need your help to keep this voice alive and thriving in the community.

Like all businesses we are struggling to keep food on the table of all our local and hard working journalists, artists, sales, delivery and drudges who keep the news coming out to you both in the newspaper and online. If you can spare a few dollars a week – or maybe more – we would appreciate all the support you are able to give to keep the voice of independent, local journalism alive.


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

Ballina Shire Council supports application for new croquet club

The Ballina Croquet Club is hoping to receive up to $300,000 in funding for a new club house at Cawarra Park. 

Storylines: Growing hope

Hope is a fragile thing in 2021. With the current pandemic and the uncertainty in so many aspects of life, our hope is being shadowed by fear. It is profoundly affecting our humanity.

Northern Rivers responds to cal for COVID-19 testing

Following the flight of a COVID positive traveller from Sydney to Ballina and the detection of COVID fragments in the Byron Bay Sewage Treatment Plant (STP) both locals and visitors have responded to calls for more testing in the region.

Open-air art walk by the river at Murwillumbah completed

The Ages of the Tweed mural that accompanies the open-air riverside art walk has now been completed.