On Tuesday 16th July a press conference was held by members of the Liberal National Party (LNP) to announce plans for protecting the Bribie Pelicans.
Local Member for Pumicestone, Simone Wilson MP, was joined by Leader of the LNP and Shadow Minister for Trade, Deb Frecklington MP, and Federal Member for Longman, Terry Young MP.
Since the placement of deterrents on the lampposts of Bribie Island Bridge, Simone Wilson has been fighting to have the situation resolved for the sake of the pelicans. Now along with Deb Frecklington she has unveiled the LNP’s plan to protect the pelicans.
In regard to the five roosts installed by the Department of Transport and Main Roads (TMR), Ms Frecklington said “The Palaszczuk Labor Government has once again betrayed the local Bribie community by returning only five roosts. Labor’s half-hearted remedy for the pelicans simply isn’t good enough.”
Simone Wilson said “Not only will an LNP Government reinstate the roosts on all 13 light posts, we will remove the cold callous deterrents… We want the pelicans to land on their familiar roosting site without threat of injury.”
When asked by locals how long this will take Ms Frecklington answered “We will prioritise getting this job done, if we are fortunate enough to be elected in October 2020. I know that Simone will be on my doorstep and ensuring that this happens as soon as possible.”
Ms Frecklington also stated the pelicans and local residents should not have to wait till October 2020, and that they hoped to force the Palaszczuk Labor Government to take action on this important local issue.
“With absolutely no consultation the Palaszczuk Government swooped in and removed the pelican roosts, absolutely disgraceful. What we love about Bribie Island is seeing the pelicans, they are an icon of Bribie Island, so it is important that we give the pelicans back their roosting spots and reinstate them on Bribie Island.” Said Ms Frecklington.
Local residents in attendance of the press conference at Bribie Island Bridge included Chris Wilson, organiser of the pelican march, who has been championing the pelicans during this whole debacle and members of the Bribie Island Environmental Protection Association (BIEPA).
In response to the press conference and coinciding press release from the LNP, TMR Minister the Honourable Mark Bailey issued a response statement.
Mr Bailey has said “Five perches were installed based on an environmental assessment conducted for TMR and the new perches are working well. TMR will continue to monitor how they’re being used, as has been previously committed, and if we need additional ones installed, we’ll do that.”
At the moment the majority of Bribie’s pelican population is at Lake Eyre, the pelicans still on Bribie are juveniles and less likely to take to roosting.
Local resident Chris Wilson has started to collect data on the pelican population and their roosting habits. By doing this she will be able to see the full impact of the deterrents and how effective the current five roosts prove to be once the adult pelicans return.
As the situation continues to unfold The Local Island and Surrounds Newspaper will continue with coverage.