Cane toads threaten iconic king brown snake

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AirCooled

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Cane toads may be putting the iconic king brown snake on the endangered list in the Northern Territory.
In the past, the Environment Department describe the highly venomous species as being common in the rural areas of Darwin and Alice Springs.
Dane Trembath, a research associate with the Northern Territory Museum, says king brown numbers have fallen enough for him to nominate the species as vulnerable.
He says the king brown population in the Top End may have dropped by more than 90 per cent.
"They still are present but they are very, very rare right now," Mr Trembath said.
He says the numbers of king browns in the north have plummeted since cane toads arrived in the Territory from Queensland several years ago.
An Environment Department spokeswoman says a list of proposed endangered species will be released for public consultation in about a month.
Meanwhile, people in Darwin and Palmerston are being urged to gear up for a week of concerted cane toad catching.
Environmental group Frogwatch has designated the second week of June as the time to clear out toads that have found a home in suburbia during the wet season.
Frogwatch coordinator Graeme Sawyer says the small toads are especially deadly because they are bite-sized for goannas and lizards.
"They are also active in the daytime when those animals are foraging," he said.
"[Lizards like] frill necks will see these interesting morsels walking around on the ground and come down out of the trees and eat them and die."
 

CamdeJong

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That's disheartening news, but not at all surprising. I doubt human intervention will help, and I think the question is will Mulgas adapt as quickly as RBBs have in Queensland?
 

PythonLegs

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The frustrating thing is that nobody in the mainstream seems to be taking this threat seriously. Cane toads have had massive impact on reptile and frog populations here in QLD- I'm in Redcliffe, and cant remember the last time I saw a frog, snake,dragon or gecko, other than AHG's and cane toads. There will be a massive decline in wildlife in the north if something drastic is not done fairly soon.
 

dossy

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last year i saw about 3 kings when in nt and i didnt see one cane toad, how long has it been like this?

i heled reduce the ct population while in qld last year by driving midle of the night and not seeing them

i hope that the king browns adapt very quickly because it would be sad to see a native die off because of a toad
 

mrkos

Well-Known Member
I spent two years working on bridges between caboolture and beerburrum and if you don't know the area around glasshouse mountains it's prime reptile country. Although there were several snake encounters 98 percent of the time it was toads,toads and more toads more toads than you could ever possible cull.
 

longqi

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We used to go down to Katherine to play with Death Adders
Very easy to find plenty
Last two trips were complete washouts
Very very hard to find
Also a lot less Blackheads too
 

fugawi

Well-Known Member
Surely we can produce a genetic disease or make them sterile or something..........I know scientists have been trying for the last 70yrs or something but there has to be a way to stop them!!! We have caused the extinction of soooooo many other species, why can't we kill 1 ugly toad. What are their natural predators in South America? Something keeps them in check in their natural habitat. Have we looked into this side of them?
 

SteveNT

Very Well-Known Member
We used to go down to Katherine to play with Death Adders
Very easy to find plenty
Last two trips were complete washouts
Very very hard to find
Also a lot less Blackheads too

Hey longqi you'll be glad to know there are big mobs of bhp's in the Ngukkur area, most common reptile around. Here's one I met this morning

DSC_0105.jpg

Also I was recently at Harriet Ck (Just outside southern Kakadu) and we met a couple there too. Bhp's are too sensible to be wiped out by toads!

Sorry, no body shots, just got my long desired macro lens.
 
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CamdeJong

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Why is it imperative that something is done?

Because hundreds of species of native herpetofauna are at serious risk from cane toads, including ALL frog species (which the cane toads eat at every stage of the life cycle AND compete with for resources), monitors, all snakes including Australia's Natricine, the Keelback which is moderately immune to cane toad poison but which is eaten by toads. And from there all other native fauna - and subsequently flora - are at risk in respect to food web and ecosystem damage from this extremely hardy and invasive pest. In what way is it NOT imperative that more information be available and more effort be applied to its eradication???
 

Hawk

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We used to go down to Katherine to play with Death Adders
Very easy to find plenty
Last two trips were complete washouts
Very very hard to find
Also a lot less Blackheads too

Unfortunately I have seen three average size cane toads around the Bony Well area this wet season, this is about 400km Nth of Alice Springs. I was very suprised to see them this far south.
 

PythonLegs

Very Well-Known Member
Hey longqi you'll be glad to know there are big mobs of bhp's in the Ngukkur area, most common reptile around. Here's one I met this morning

View attachment 202193

Also I was recently at Harriet Ck (Just outside southern Kakadu) and we met a couple there too. Bhp's are too sensible to be wiped out by toads!

Sorry, no body shots, just got my long desired macro lens.

Mate, you're kidding yourself. There may be big mobs there now, but once toads are there in numbers, there won't be.
 

Hawk

Well-Known Member
Refering to my above post, I would just like to piont out that Bony Well is a tourist stop and whether these cane toads hitched a ride or were released there by someone who knew no better is something we may never know. But regardless of which they are there.
 
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