Man fined $2205 for banned act on Aussie tourist island

A Brisbane man has been fined more than $2,000 for feeding a dingo pup on popular tourist hotspot Fraser Island.

A witness reported the man to the Queensland Parks and Wildlife Service after taking photos of him hand-feeding the dingo at Hook Point on March 17.

“The member of the public contacted the Queensland Parks and Wildlife Service and provided the photographs and the man’s vehicle registration number,” acting compliance manager Adam Northam said.

“They advised us the man was hand feeding what appeared to be crackers or biscuits, and also offered water in the palm of his hand to the wongari [dingo].”

The man feeding the dingo, leading to a fine.
A man has copped a hefty fine for feeding a dingo pup. Source: Queensland Parks and Wildlife Service/ABC

Following an investigation, the man admitted to deliberately hand-feeding the pup on several occasions and subsequently copped a $2,205 fine, Mr Northam said.

“Rangers would like to thank the member of the public who witnessed the alleged feeding and reported the incident,” he added.

“We take a zero-tolerance approach to the deliberate feeding of wongari because people who feed or interfere with wongari put themselves and other people in danger.”

Why people shouldn't feed dingoes

The acting compliance manager said it’s not uncommon for Fraser Island residents or tourists to alert the rangers and Queensland Police Service when people offend against dingoes.

“People who break the rules and deliberately feed or interfere with wongari, or doesn’t secure their food and rubbish can expect a fine or to appear in court,” Mr Northam added.

The dingo eating out of the man's hand.
A witness submitted photos of the man breaking the rules to the Queensland Parks and Wildlife Service. Source: Queensland Parks and Wildlife Service/ABC

“The rules are there for a reason, to keep people and wongari safe. Feeding dingoes can result in the animals becoming habituated, and they can lose their natural wariness of people.

“The animals can begin to expect food from humans which leads to habituation and heightens the risk of aggression and personal injury or the destruction of the animals by teaching them poor behaviours.

“The wongari are not starving and they have access to plenty of natural food.”

Anyone who witnesses a concerning dingo encounter is urged to call 07 4127 9150.

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