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Providing a safe environment for penguins requires responsible dog ownership


The Parks and Wildlife Service (PWS) suspect that dogs are responsible for six more penguin deaths at Sulphur Creek near Burnie on 1 November, bringing the total to 20 penguins killed in the area over the last seven days.

PWS rangers and local council dog control officers have attended similar incidents this year on Sulphur Creek beach involving dog attacks on penguins.

In an attempt to prevent incidents such as this, PWS rangers conduct regular patrols, doorknock residents in the area and place “no dog access” signs at entry points of the beach.

Rangers will again undertake patrols in the area and speak to locals in an attempt to apprehend any dog at large, which may have contributed to the penguin deaths.

The PWS remind dog owners of the need to take responsibility for their animals at all times as dogs have the capacity to do a lot of damage to penguin colonies in a short time - even dogs that have previously shown no hunting instinct.

Owners are reminded that dog access in reserves is restricted and penalties apply under the Parks and Reserves Management Act 2002 and the Dog Control Act 2000.  Owners could face fines and in some cases the dog may be destroyed.

Anyone with any information about this incident is asked to contact the PWS Ulverstone office on 6464 3018.

Further testing is being carried out on the animals at the Mt Pleasant Laboratories to identify the cause of death.