THE flying foxes have mostly moved on, but North Burnett Mayor Don Waugh is still happy the State Government has decided to give councils more freedom to get rid of them.
THE flying foxes have mostly moved on, but North Burnett Mayor Don Waugh is still happy the State Government has decided to give councils more freedom to get rid of them. Scottie Simmonds

Flying foxes to be moved on under new rules

THE flying foxes have mostly moved on, but North Burnett Mayor Don Waugh is still happy the State Government has decided to give councils more freedom to get rid of them.

Environment and Heritage Protection Minister Andrew Powell said in line with the State Government's war on green tape, local councils would be given the authority to manage problem flying fox roosts in urban areas without having to apply for a damage mitigation permit.

"We appreciate the significant impact flying foxes have had on some towns across Queensland and these new measures will make it easier for local communities to minimise those problems," Mr Powell said.

"In designated urban areas, councils will be given 'as of right' authority to make their own decisions to disperse or otherwise manage flying fox roosts consistent with an agreed Code of Practice."

"That's excellent," Cr Waugh said.

"We've worked pretty well with government departments."

Gaydnah had a problem with red flying foxes last year and early this year, but Cr Waugh said they had managed to move them on.

"We've still got a few black ones hanging around," he said.

"They're not causing great problems at this stage.

"It's really good to know we can make our own rules."

Cr Waugh said the ruling showed the State Government recognised the worth of local government.

Member for Burnett Stephen Bennett said flying fox dispersal was a complex issue and consideration had to be given to where the animals might go once they were moved on.

"We believe those decisions are best left to those local governments that are already managing flying fox roosts at an operational level," he said.
"Council officers will be required to comply with a code of practice that will govern the way dispersals are done to best manage the associated risks."
Mr Bennett said the "as of right" authority would apply for the non-lethal removal or modification of roosts.