Update on Julatten Trees
Lloyd Nielsen <>
Sat, 17 Oct 1998 09:36:39 -0700
A quick note in reply to those who have been asking for news about the
We are at a waiting stage at present. Council still intends to lop the
trees but considers it has made an enormous concession in waiting 10
days until a wildlife consultant is present when they are lopped (he
returns on 20th). We have strongly suggested to Council to leave the
lopping until after the birds' breeding season is finished (to buy time)
but Council has rejected this, saying the trees will be lopped as soon
as possible but have assured us that 'the birds will come back' after
lopping! (Can you believe it?)
The lopping is to be done by men climbing the trees with ropes and
using chain saws rather than by mechanical means so the trees will be
lopped fairly heavily. One of the things to be done is to remove a
small, magnificent Strangler Fig from one of the largest gums. We have
asked WHY? (Strangler Figs are one of the least prone to drop
branches. I would think this one will drop its first branch in 150
years if it is lucky!) No doubt, if Council does not stop this menace,
we will have nothing else but Strangler Figs in a few years!! - Again,
can you believe it?? It is a fine example of how strangler figs
establish themselves and a great point of interest for visitors. To add
to that, the Brahminy Kites have their nest right beside it and a
Sulphur-crested Cockatoo has a nest in a limb a metre below it.
Early last week when the mayor heard we were going to make a big issue
of the lopping his comments were 'Let them try'. Since then we have had
the issue in all the newspapers, on radio and on television. I think he
might realise now we mean business! Channel Nine did a great report for
the six o'clock news. They nominated 9.30 AM on site for filming - a
horribale hour for most families. They aked for half a dozen angry
residents - 43 turned up. Channel Nine were very impressed. The
Metallic Starlings flew back and forth to their nests (in a tree marked
for lopping), the Brahminy Kite attended her nest (in another tree
marked for lopping and from which the strangler is to be removed) and
several Sulphur-crested Cockatoos put their heads out of hollows (in
other trees marked for lopping) - all on cue - and all of which went to
air. An ex-councillor slammed Councillor Gray and so on. Channel Nine
also aired another embarrassing issue for the Council the following
night. We now have the television people on alert in case the Council
tries to do a 'Joh act' and do the job by surprise at some strange hour.
Our line of attack now is to rally as many people as we can to lobby the
Minister for Environment and Heritage to place a protection order over
the trees and to have an exclusion zone created under them. One of our
group managed to get an appointment with the Minister in Brisbane late
yesterday afternoon - as yet we have not heard the outcome.
If Council goes ahead with lopping, we will be looking at the option of
legal action depending on cost. There are certain avenues we can take
and perhaps it is time to set a precedent.
If you have friends or aquaintences who have enjoyed this area and
Kingfisher Park and perhaps managed to see a Lesser Sooty Owl, please
encourage them too, to write/fax/email the Minister asking him to
intervene. (We have been advised that the number of letters/messages
the Minister recieves will have a strong bearing on his decision).
There is little need to say it but as environmentalists we must stop
this insanity and try to ensure similar situations cannot happen again.
I will keep you posted on further developments.
Many many thanks for the support we have already received.
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