Dominic Gorman had to look twice when he spotted a lace monitor darting up a tree near Rochester with something large in its mouth.DARREN LINTON January 24, 2013 4:52am
Dominic Gorman had to look twice when he spotted a lace monitor darting up a tree near Rochester with something large in its mouth.
The monitor, more commonly know as a tree goanna, was fighting a feral cat.
‘‘I couldn’t really believe it at first, I had to look a couple of times,’’ he said.
‘‘I pulled my camera out and it was in a fight with a cat.’’
Mr Gorman first posted the photographs of the life-and-death struggle on social media and he expected a backlash from cat lovers.
‘‘I had a few friends say to me you should have saved the cat,’’ he said.
‘‘Most people though seemed to appreciate that the feral cat population isn’t really a good thing.’’
Mr Gorman decided to simply photograph the encounter rather than intervene in what a leading reptile expert says is a normal activity in the wild.
Melbourne Zoo’s head of reptiles Jon Birkett said he had seen examples of goannas taking feral kittens before, but never one as large as captured in the photographs.
‘‘They are a primary predator in our Victorian environment,’’ he said.
‘‘I’ve seen examples of it many times, goannas take sizeable animals like possums and cats, but never a cat that size, usually much smaller kittens.’’
Mr Birkett said when feral cats grew to adult size the tables were turned.
‘‘They are a significant predator of lizards, including young goannas,’’ he said.
In this case, the goanna won, which Mr Gorman said was not only incredible to witness, but also pleasing.
‘‘I have a big problem with seeing feral cats around because they do damage to the native wildlife, it was good to see the natives having a win,’’ he said.
Mr Birkett said despite their armoury of weapons, including a tail-flick, sharp claws and even sharper teeth, goannas would never win the numbers game.
‘‘The goanna won’t need a feed for quite some time after that,’’ he said, meaning the rest of the litter would be free to grow, breed and add to the number of feral pests in the bush.
Shepparton’s Declo Bisimwa firmly believes education is the key to a better life.
Beautiful weather greeted Tungamah residents for the 18th running of the Tungamah Lions Ten Thousand on Sunday.
When Keith and Marion Grumley and their growing family moved to Tatura on January 18, 1968, little did they know that it would be the start of a long and lasting connection to the town.
Garners Boxing Gym in Echuca is encouraging young people to get active with weekly boxing/cardio classes.
Rochester Rotary Club has celebrated its 50th birthday in style.
Sorting future of Campaspe pools
A theatre production with a difference is coming to Seymour.
Local athletes will go head-to-head with some of the best competitors from around the world in swimming and athletics in December.
District residents and visitors will be able to enjoy some of the region’s most beautiful private gardens on Sunday.
The 116th annual Cobram Show went off with a bang at the weekend, drawing in crowds from far and wide for two days of fun.
Tomorrow is a Total Fire Ban day in Deniliquin, meaning no fires can be lit in the open and all fire permits are suspended.
Fifty new full-time jobs will be created at Tatura with a multimillion-dollar expansion of the abattoirs expected to be announced today.
Remembering Australian political giant Gough Whitlam who once called on Benalla police to stop then Treasurer Frank Crean on his journey up the Hume to phone the PM.
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