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Wednesday, April 21, 2021

Cane toad found at nursery, threat eliminated

He was a long way from home, but the ACT Government’s biosecurity team identified and secured a male cane toad at ACT Government’s Yarralumla Wholesale Nursery last Friday, 12 March.

ACT Conservator of Flora and Fauna, Ian Walker said he is confident that while the incursion is limited to just one toad from a suspected shipment of nursery plants that arrived from Queensland the previous week, the community should still stay vigilant and report any suspected sightings.

“We are confident that there is no risk to Canberra’s environment because this one cane toad was inadvertently transported to Canberra on a truck,” Ian Walker said.

“Teams from across government undertook an intensive search of the nursery and surrounding area over the weekend. No additional cane toads were located during these searches, indicating that this was an isolated incursion.

“It is highly unlikely a cane toad population would establish this far south due to Canberra’s cold winter climate, especially with the colder weather we experienced on Sunday.

“This incident was treated seriously, and through the diligence of the nursery staff in their reporting and the quick investigation and action from those involved in the response, any possibility of a population of cane toads persisting in the nursery has been removed.”

Cane toads are toxic at all stages of their lifecycle from eggs to tadpoles to adults and their toxin is strong enough to kill most native and domestic animals including pets and some of our threatened species.

What if you think you see a cane toad?

  • Do not kill it as it is most likely a native frog
  • Exercise caution and take a close-up photograph
  • Wearing rubber gloves and eye protection, put into a well-ventilated container with 1cm of water
  • Phone Access Canberra on 13 22 81.

For more information on cane toads visit the Environment, Planning and Sustainable Development website.

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