Some of the feral goats removed from Great Keppel Island.Photo contributed.
Some of the feral goats removed from Great Keppel Island.Photo contributed. Photo contributed ROK290716goats

Goats go gang-busters invading Great Keppel Island

GREAT Keppel Island lovers are concerned goats are yet again invading the Central Queensland getaway.

Concerned resident Tom Sjolund emailed Livingstone Shire Council Mayor Bill Ludwig on Friday night about the issue where populations are expected to have grown by 75 per cent per year since the last cull operation two years ago.

Mr Sjolund, from the Yanga group, told The Morning Bulletin yesterday that the population was expected to be about 800 now "which is unsustainable".

"There were around 400 left after they took the 146 off the island in 2016," he said.

Mr Sjolund said there had also been good seasons for goats in recent years.

He said now there were concerns the food source would dry out and the goats would head to the mangroves where they tend to get stuck in the mud and drown when the tide returns.

An operational plan for mustering the pest species was developed in 2016.

The 2016 joint exercise was carried out by Livingstone Shire Council, Tower Holdings, Department of Natural Resources and Biosecurity Queensland. It saw 146 goats removed from the island in two weeks.

Tower Holdings, under its lease conditions with the Queensland Government, is required to control all declared pests - which the goats are one of - on the island.

In 2016, the aerial survey carried out prior to the culling identified about seven different mobs of goats on GKI and a total of 380 spotted goats.

Areas not checked were East end of Long Beach, Wyndham Cove and shoreline to West Clam Bay, Clam Bay to Lighthouse coastline, Red Beach and Coconut Point areas.

The Bulletin yesterday attempted to contact Tower Holdings and Livingstone Mayor Bill Ludwig for an update on the goat management plan but calls went unanswered.