Bathurst Kangaroo Project numbers are being investigated

A KANGAROO relocation project that took place at Mount Panorama is now being investigated by the Office of Environment and Heritage (OEH).

The OEH issued a licence to move up to 30 kangaroos, however there are reports a larger number of animals were moved.

Earlier this year, the Bathurst Kangaroo Project (BKP) relocated a mob of kangaroos from the Mount Panorama precinct to a private property in the Capertee Valley, in the Lithgow local government area.

The initiative was largely completed by volunteers who corralled the marsupials into a large holding pen off College Road before they were darted and relocated.

The Western Advocate has previously reported that up to 300 kangaroos were relocated from the Mount.

A Go Fund Me Page, set up by Sally Neaves on behalf of the BKP, which has so far raised $23,500, states 150 kangaroos would be relocated.

“The kangaroos’ habitat is being destroyed by Bathurst Regional Council who purchased the site in 2015,” the web page states.

RELOCATION PROJECT: Kangaroos being loaded into a troop carrier to be transported to the release site outside Bathurst. Photo: GERARDA MADER 030117dart3

RELOCATION PROJECT: Kangaroos being loaded into a troop carrier to be transported to the release site outside Bathurst. Photo: GERARDA MADER 030117dart3

“They are developing it to service the internationally famous Mount Panorama racing track.”

An OEH spokeswoman told the Advocate that the OEH issued a license to “move up to 30 kangaroos as a pilot translocation study”.

“The licence required translocated animals to be radio-tracked to measure dispersal and any potential adverse impacts on fauna, ecosystems or the local community,” she said.

“OEH is currently looking into reports that more than 30 kangaroos were moved.”

The relocation site was initially kept a secret by BKP’s co-ordinator Helen Bergen and ecologist Ray Mjadwesch in order to protect the animals, however last month they confirmed it was an 800 hectare block of privately-owned land in the Capertee Valley.

A number of Capertee Valley residents have now contacted the OEH to complain that tagged ’roos from Mount Panorama have become a problem on their land.

Lyn and Bruce Richardson told the Advocate last month that their 3500-acre grazing property had been affected by the “secretive” relocation of the kangaroos.

WAITING: Kangaroos in a holding pen near Mount Panorama before they were relocated to the Capertee Valley earlier this year. Photo: PHIL BLATCH

WAITING: Kangaroos in a holding pen near Mount Panorama before they were relocated to the Capertee Valley earlier this year. Photo: PHIL BLATCH

“We live totally off our land, this is our livelihood – cattle, sheep and horses,” Mrs Richardson said.

“They [BKP] have no regard for our livelihood. How dare they shift this problem.”

Another Capertee Valley resident, Tracey Isaacson, said her husband “saw tagged ’roos in a mob feeding at our property at Ben Bullen”.

“We are located near the Baal Bone Colliery and our other property at Round Swamp also has tagged ’roos on it,” she said.

“That means that both of our properties are infected with the ’roos even though they are 10 kilometres apart.”

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IN CARE: Tasmanian vet Dr Alistair Brown checks on darted kangaroos waiting to be measured and weighed before relocation. Photo: JAMES FITZGERALD 030117dart1

IN CARE: Tasmanian vet Dr Alistair Brown checks on darted kangaroos waiting to be measured and weighed before relocation. Photo: JAMES FITZGERALD 030117dart1

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