SLOW DOWN: Cars pass an emu near Iluka.
SLOW DOWN: Cars pass an emu near Iluka.

Campaign to save Iluka?s emu chicks

By JURIS GRANEY

jgraney@dailyexaminer.com.au

AUTHORITIES are again pleading with motorists using Iluka Road, between Johnsons Lane and the town limits, to slow down and hopefully prevent the deaths of five emu chicks.

Last year, The Daily Examiner reported that an entire family of chicks, a new generation of the flightless birds, had been wiped out on Iluka Road, mowed down by drivers.

A new family, including five young birds, has made its pilgrimage to the region and made a home right next to the main road that services the town.

"There is 1.7km between Johnson Lane and the town limits, surely people don't need to speed right into town," the Residents of Iluka Association president, Kay Jeffery, said.

"The amount of damage an emu can do to a car is amazing, but the amount of damage done to an emu is worse.

"People just won't listen ... they need to slow down, especially when these emus are about."

Ms Jeffery said four adult birds, along with five young chicks, had moved down the coast from around Evans Head to spend time in Iluka like they do every year.

The Clarence Valley Council mayor, Ian Tiley, urged concerned residents to bring the matter to the attention of the local traffic committee, comprising representatives of NSW police, the RTA and council.

"We need to convince the police and the RTA that a reduction of speed is warranted," Cr Tiley said.

"I am aware that the emu chicks were all killed last year so we need to get the message to drivers the need to slow down and be aware of the environment.

"It was very disappointing last year to lose all those chicks, let's see if we can't give these new chicks a chance at life by slowing down."

The Iluka Chamber of Commerce president, Jim Critchley, said he would approach businesses along Johnsons Lane, the Iluka Golf Course and Woody Head Caravan Park to become signatures on a letter to the traffic committee.

"We are keen to approach the committee with a letter outlining our proposal," he said. "We are happy to front a concerted effort to get results and save the emus."



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