GRAPHIC IMAGES: ‘Significant’ injuries on dugong
UPDATE: A Department of Environment and Science spokesperson said based on the photographs it appears to be a normal sized adult dugong that washed ashore this morning.
The carcass was photographed by local Kevin Hill at Archies Beach.
The spokesperson said the injuries on the carcass were “significant” but it was not possible to determine a cause of death based on the photograph.
“Unfortunately, marine animals can die from entanglement in discarded fishing lines, crab pots and similar material, or from a vessel strike,” the spokesperson said.
“This is why the Department of Environment and Science reminds boaties to “go slow for those below” if dugong or whales are in the vicinity.
“Local authorities are authorised to dispose of marine animal carcasses that wash up on beaches in their area, particularly if the carcass is causing a nuisance or is a public safety risk.”
If anyone sees a marine animal washed up in a public area they can report this to the local council, or to the department on 1300 130 372.
Queensland Parks and Wildlife Service wildlife officers investigate marine animal strandings that are reported.
EARLIER: What’s believed to be a dugong has washed up on the southern end of Archies Beach.
Local resident Kevin Hill photographed the scene this morning and is urging people not to swim nearby.
He said he’s contacted lifesavers and hopes the beach will be closed until it is safe.
The NewsMail has contact the Bundaberg Regional Council about the matter as the carcass is not on a Surf Life Saving Queensland patrolled beach.
According to the Department of Environment and Science adult dugongs can reach lengths of more than three metres and weigh up to 420kg.
“Dugongs feed almost exclusively on seagrass, a flowering plant found in shallow water areas,” the department’s website reads.
“An adult will eat about 7% of their body weight in seagrass each day.
“As dugong feed, whole plants are uprooted leaving telltale tracks behind. They will also feed on macro-invertebrates such as sea squirts.”