Several camping areas on Queensland’s Fraser Island (K’gari) have been abruptly closed due to ‘increased threatening’ dingo behaviour.
The Department of Environment and Science issued an alert announcing the move in the wake of another spate of frightening dingo incidents.
“Camping zones 3, 4 and 5 located between Poyungan Rocks and The Pinnacles on K’gari are temporarily closed until further notice due to increased threatening wongari (dingo) activity in the area,” it said. “This closure is necessary to reduce negative dingo interactions and allow for ongoing monitoring and dingo management.”
People with camping bookings over the closure period can change their dates or get a refund.
The campsites in zones 1, 2 and 6 and fenced camping areas at Eli, One Tree, Wongai and Cornwells on Eastern Beach will remain open.
The announcement comes just a couple of days after rangers on the island said they had been left dismayed by another dangerous, unprovoked interaction between a man and a dingo.
Senior Ranger Linda Behrendorff said the Queensland Parks and Wildlife Service (QPWS) recently received a video showing the man holding out a water bottle to a dingo near Waddy Point beach.
“After the recent incidents on K’gari, it is disappointing that anyone would choose to deliberately interact with a wongari,” Ms Behrendorff said. “Following those incidents between people and wongari, rangers have increased our patrols and our camping area education … and despite our efforts and the publicity surrounding those recent incidents, people are still engaging with wongari on K’gari.”
She said just one interaction like this could set dingoes on the path to becoming habituated.
Ms Behrendorff said the man appeared to be a part of a large group of people, and he wasn’t aware he was being filmed.
The Queensland Parks and Wildlife Service (QPWS) is also investigating two other incidents in recent days.
Two collared dingoes first approached and circled seven adults at Eli Creek. One of the wongari lunged and mouthed a woman on the thigh. A member of the group threw a stick at the animals and scared them off.
The dingoes then went down Eli Creek and approached a woman from behind. When the woman turned around and saw the animals, she fell and was bitten on the thigh.
QPWS rangers provided assistance to the woman, and offered medical treatment which was declined.
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