FERAL FOWLS: Rogue chickens cause chaos in Maclean
A WILD population of feral chickens that have been dumped on Lookout Hill are causing havoc in Maclean, with Clarence Valley Council urging residents not to dump unwanted pets in bushland.
The population of fowls on Lookout Hill are hampering the efforts of the Maclean Landcare Group who have worked tirelessly to rehabilitate the area by scratching out the native vegetation and exposing the fragile soil to the elements.
Council's manager of environment, development and strategic planning Adam Cameron said there has been a recent spate of poultry dumping in the Clarence Valley.
"Anyone who has unwanted poultry also has a responsibility to deal with them. If you are unsure what your options are the RSPCA will be able to help you," he said.
Mr Cameron emphasised that letting birds go into the wild is not the ethical choice.
"Not only do they become a potential problem for other members of the community and the environment but domesticated birds will also face a cruel end when left to fend for themselves," he said.
"We will be working with Local Land Services to catch and remove the feral poultry to prevent any further damage to the lookout reserve.
"The use of surveillance cameras is also being trialled to assist in identifying illegal dumpers and to inform us about the presence of feral animals."
Mr Cameron also warned people not to leave food out for the abandoned birds.
"Leaving food out for the birds is only exacerbating the problem, as this attracts vermin such as rats," he said.