Sign trial puts spotlight on wildlife

Published 5:00am 14 February 2022

Sign trial puts spotlight on wildlife
Words by Jodie Powell

A new campaign aimed at protecting marsupials from motorists across the Moreton Bay Region rolls out today.

The campaign features giant bright yellow corflute cutouts of kangaroos and koalas, strategically placed to alert drivers they’re in a wildlife corridor.

Mayor Peter Flannery says that with the traditional koala and kangaroo breeding season drawing to a close, there is an abundance of young animals around the region.

“Our wildlife have been getting all loved up during breeding season, meaning our parks and forests are now teeming with joeys who are making their way out into the world, placing them at risk when it comes to the roadways,” he says

The high-visibility corflute signs in the shape of koalas and kangaroos, designed by Council’s Green Infrastructure team, bear simple messages including “Stay Alert”, “Slow Down” and “Take Care”.

The material is like that used for roadwork and building site signs, so the signs are reflective when lit by passing headlights at night.

Avoid collisions

Sign trial puts spotlight on wildlife

The signs have been installed at 12 sites across Moreton Bay for the 10-day trial.

Launching the campaign while meeting Baby the squirrel glider and blossom the ringtail possum

at Moore Rd, Kurwongbah, Mayor Flannery says Council receives more than 700 calls a year to remove deceased animals from roads.

“We want to help drivers avoid animal collisions, and prevent injuries and fatalities, as well as costly insurance claims,” he says.

Councillor Darren Grimwade (Div 11) says Council logs more than 120 requests each year asking for more animal warning signs.

Collecting data

Sign trial puts spotlight on wildlife

“We’ll use the data collected from both the signed and non-signed locations to see how effective this program is,” Cr Grimwade says.

“These corflute signs are designed to be a seasonal response to the risk of wildlife on roads during breeding and joey seasons and can be rapidly deployed as needed.”

Take care on the roads

Sign trial puts spotlight on wildlife

Division 7 Councillor Yvonne Barlow has witnessed first-hand the tragedy of animal strikes.

“We have possums, a lot of wallabies, and a lot of other little creatures,” Cr Barlow says.

“We might own the land here, but they live here these little creatures - this is their home, so we need to be very careful.”

Wildlife Preservation Society of Queensland projects manager Matt Cecil says animal strikes remain a significant issue, particularly when drivers are distracted by loud music or phones.

“I love the shape of the signs - they’re large, they’re novel, they’re new - I think they’re going to create some interest within the community, and the message to slow down and be aware in areas where you see these signs will be loud and clear,” Matt says.

Animal expert Martin Fingland from Geckoes Wildlife says the novel shapes are sure to grab children’s attention.

“It’s often the kids that say to mum and dad, ‘hey there could be koalas along here, I’ve just seen the sign’,” Martin says.

WHERE THE SIGNS WILL BE

Freeman Rd, Toorbul

Buckley Rd, Burpengary East

Market Dve, Caboolture South

Maryvale Rd, Mango Hill

Nathan Rd, Kippa-Ring

Duffield Rd, Clontarf

Alma Rd, Dakabin

Torrens Rd, Petrie

Prothero Rd, Joyner

Bunya Rd, Bunya

Moore Rd, Kurwongbah

Hauton Rd, Burpengary

Read more local news here.

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