Cane Toads Threaten WA?

I received the following email from someone looking for advice:

“I rarely get involved in environmental causes but I think this one is worth it because the opportunity seems to be now or never. The consequences of cane toads don’t seem to be life or death but I’d certainly rather live without them and also save my tax payer dollars from trying to manage the problem later on. Same as international quarantine.

To me it’s a no brainer – but happy for any sceptics to tell me why I might be misguided… ”

Subject: Fw: help STOP THE TOAD

Hi everyone, please read this and log onto the online petition (takes
2mins of your time) to lobby the West Australian govt to support this
initiative to stop the cane toadentering WA. If they manage to cross
into the Kimberley, this will havedevastating consequences on our state’s biodiversity, and they will eventually make their way into the South-West. Please help by filling in the petition and forwarding this message on. Kath

if you have problems reading this email please go to

We have just 4 months to STOP THE TOAD from entering WA!
Scientists and community groups in Western Australia and the Northern
Territory are combining forces to implement a trapping program to
stop cane toads reaching the Ord River as rains open the way for them in the next wet season (Nov 2005-March 2006).

The trapping program aims to Stop The Toad at a natural barrier
inside the NT.

Your help is sought to encourage state and federal governments to
support this initiative.

Sign the online petition at to inform the WA
Premier,the Northern Territory Chief Minister and the Federal Minister
for the Environment of our grave concern.

We take the fight to the toad and stop its advance across the top
NOW. Or we suffer the consequences for ever more.

Failure will mean the loss of much of the Kimberley’s amazing
biodiversity, with serious implications for WA’s tourism, economy and
Aboriginal communities.

Most people in the north of Australia believe it’s worth a try. We are
supporting them.
Please, support us, and let your friends know about this critical
issue too.

GO to

I am not sure that I would empty my piggy bank on the cause (see the plea for donations at the link) and I probably wouldn’t sign the petition because it seems over-the-top as in the following text,

“The cane toad’s rampage through Qld and the NT has already caused the local extinction of animals like quolls and some goanna species and the impacts on fresh water crocodiles, snakes and birds are bound to be just as devastating. This toxic feral pest eats any native animal that will fit into its mouth. It poisons anything that bites it or picks it up. It is toxic even at egg and tadpole stage. It is extinction in motion.

But I think it is great that WWF and the other conservation groups are focusing on ferals and weeds and stopping their spread – probably the best thing these groups can do for the environment is to raise awareness of these issues and prod governments into action.

One Response to Cane Toads Threaten WA?

  1. Louis Hissink June 29, 2005 at 10:24 pm #

    Cane toads – from what little data I have gleaned, the cane toads, while initially causing some ecological imbalance, equilibrate with other species and co-exist.

    The only specie which seems to be unstoppable is humanity.

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