The toads are a-comin'...

29 Jan, 2010 01:00 AM
The barramundi aquaculture pond near Kununurra where two cane toads were found last week.
The barramundi aquaculture pond near Kununurra where two cane toads were found last week.

WA's most unwanted newcomer is inching closer to taking over its first town, with two adult cane toads discovered near Kununurra.

The toads were discovered near a barramundi aquaculture pond last week by a resident at Mud Springs Aboriginal community, about 12km east of the town.

Department of Environment and Conservation cane toad spokesman Corrin Everitt said it was believed the toads came into the area under their own steam.

Previous toad spottings past the border have been when the pests hitched a ride on vehicles.

No other toads were found in the area, despite an extensive search.

"Unfortunately this shows that despite our best efforts, with more heavy rainfall expected this wet season they are likely to continue their march towards Kununurra," Ms Everitt said.

A dead cane toad was sighted adjacent to Victoria Highway 9km east of Kununurra, two days before the Mud Springs capture.

"We have also notified residents at Crossing Falls community, which is near Mud Springs, about the latest cane toad sightings to ensure they remain vigilant," Ms Everitt said.

DEC staff would continue to carry out surveillance to monitor the toad frontline, while locals had been sent brochures telling them how to differentiate the pests from native frogs, and hints to keep them out of their backyards.

Last month, the State Government allocated $340,500 to the independent Kimberley Toad Busters as part of a $1.2 million election promise to support the fight against cane toads.

The Toad Busters have been in dispute with DEC over their method of using dettol and carbon dioxide to kill toads.

Toads first advanced into WA in February last year.



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