Natural Resource Management
Council has a small team of Natural Resource Management staff who undertake coastal, riparian and wetland rehabilitation as well as weed control programs.
Council is also a point of contact for information and advice on pests and weeds, revegetation works and natural resource management issues.
Queensland has laws relating to environmental nuisances. If you have an issue with dust, smoke, noise, light, odour or any other emission, Council will investigate and determine if the nuisance is an offence under the Environmental Protection Act.
If the nuisance is determined to be an offence, Council will take action on your behalf.
Estuarine (saltwater) crocodiles naturally occur in waterways and water bodies in the Cassowary Coast region, and throughout central and northern Queensland.
The State Government's Department of Environment and Heritage Protection manages saltwater crocodiles. More information is available on the department's website at www.ehp.qld.gov.au . It is also available in the department's Cassowary Coast Regional Council Saltwater Crocodile Management Plan.
All crocodile sightings in Queensland should be reported to the CrocWatch hotline on 1300 130 372.
The Department of Environment and Heritage Protection records and investigates all crocodile reports made by the public and will take appropriate action based on the potential safety risk posed by the animal.
A summary of all current crocodile sightings and declared crocodiles of concern is available on the department's CrocWatch page.
Always remember that no natural waterway in crocodile country is ever 100% risk free, and the public should remain 'croc-wise' at all times when in and around crocodile habitat.
Living in a caravan park/camping ground which has not been approved/registered is not permitted, unless a permit has been granted by Council.
Those camping outside designated camping grounds can be reported to Council.
A council officer will investigate the complaint and may issue a notice.
Please see the Caravan and Camping page for advice on where you can stay in the Cassowary Coast region.
There are a number of different mosquitoes that can impact you, your family and your pets.
The predominant ones in Cassowary Coast are:
- saltmarsh mosquitoes (Aedes vigilax) - breed in saltmarsh and mangrove habitats
- freshwater breeding mosquitoes (Culex annulirostris) – breed after rainfall
- container breeding mosquitoes (Aedes notoscriptus) – usual habitat is the home garden & containers
- Saltmarsh mosquitoes (Aedes vigilax) breed in:
Although the saltmarsh mosquito lives only for a few weeks the adult mosquito can travel 10km to feed, with females returning to the wetlands to lay her eggs. During the warmer months, the water temperature rises and this rapidly increases the speed at which larvae grow, resulting in an egg becoming an adult mosquito in just five-to-six days.
With each mosquito capable of laying hundreds of eggs at a time, adult numbers can escalate quickly. During especially hot, dry periods, multiple generations of saltmarsh mosquito eggs can lay dormant on wetland shores for months. Sudden, heavy rains or a significant high tide that submerges these eggs, can then trigger a mass hatching (of eggs to larvae stage).
Freshwater breeding mosquitoes (Culex annulirostris) breed in:
- shallow freshwater pools • grassy drains and depressions
- rural areas such as cane fields & banana plantations
Where Mosquitoes Breed
The common banded freshwater-breeding mosquito is a carrier of Ross River and Barmah Forest viruses in Queensland. Other freshwater breeding mosquitoes can also carry these viruses, as well as heartworm, which effects cats and dogs. Landowners are responsible for managing of the control of mosquitoes on their land.
Container-breeding mosquitoes (Aedes notoscriptus) breed in:
• natural containers such as: tree cavities and bromeliads
• made containers such as: pot plant saucers, bird baths, discarded tyres, garden rubbish, roof gutters, unmaintained, unchlorinated swimming pools, poorly-maintained rainwater tanks.
Adult container-breeding mosquitoes lay their eggs above the water line in containers. The eggs remain dormant until rain or watering fills these containers, triggering the eggs to hatch into larvae.
Adult mosquitoes will be abundant about a week after this happens. This species also occurs in winter in well-watered gardens and can transmit heartworm to pets. Control of this species requires property owners to be aware of breeding sites and remove or manage them.
How To Reduce Mosquitoes
Help keep these mosquitoes out of our region by remembering that anything around your property that can fill with water is a potential breeding site. Protect yourself and your household You can protect yourself by:
- limiting your time in mosquito-prone areas, especially around dawn and dusk
- wearing loose-fitting, light-coloured clothing with long sleeves and long trousers
- using a personal insect repellent containing picaridin or DEET on exposed skin
- screening doors and windows or using air conditioning
- sleeping under a mosquito bed net
- using mosquito coils, lanterns and insecticide emanators
- switching on a fan as the airflow produced will help keep mosquitoes away
- removing potential breeding sites
- managing containers which can become water-filled around your property
- screening and maintaining your rainwater tanks. Council does not provide mosquito fogging services.
For More information
For further information on How To Keep Your Water Tank Safe from mosquitoes, visit: Rainwater factsheet
For further information on Mosquitoes visit: Are you Mozzie Ready?
For further information on Prevention of Mosquitoes After a Storm, Flood or Cyclone visit:Prevention after a Storm, Flood or Cyclone
For further information on Removing Potential Breeding Sites, visit: Potential Breeding Sites
For advice on control and prevention of mosquito breeding contact Council's Environmental Health Officers
Phone: 1300 763 903
Council is responsible for regulating noise from domestic animals, regulated devices (lawn mowers, power tools), refrigeration equipment, spa blowers and pool pumps, air conditioning, power boat engines and environmentally-relevant activities.
Noise is a major source of nuisance within the community, however only certain types of noises are regulated under Queensland law.
Noise from building works is restricted to 6.30am-6.30pm Monday to Saturday. Noise from building works on a Sunday or public holiday is not permitted.
Other types of regulated noise include tools such as leaf blowers, lawn mowers and power tools, air conditioning and refrigeration equipment, pumps and boat engines. For further details on noise restrictions and nuisances please contact Council's Environmental Services section on 1300 763 903.
Lawn mowers, power tools, hammers etc can be used between 7am and 7pm Monday to Saturday. They can also be used between 8am and 7pm on Sundays and public holidays.
Residential/Commercial Construction Sites:
The use of air compressors, concreting equipment, power tools, vibratory equipment, hammers and generators is restricted to Monday to Saturday from 6.30am to 6.30pm and Sunday’s 8am – 7pm.
Barking Dogs/Animal Noises:
If you consider a dog's bark or the actions of another animal or bird to be a nuisance - by creating a noise which persistently occurs or continues to such a degree or extent that it unreasonably interferes with the peace, comfort or social well-being of a reasonable person - you can contact Council's Environmental Services Department and a Local Law Officer will investigate.
Police are responsible for indoor venues, open-air events and amplified devices.
Council conducts quarterly baiting programs for wild dogs. To qualify for a baiting program, a land owner must meet the following criteria:
- Council needs a number of participants across any given locality for effective control measures.
- Written agreement is needed from all neighbours within 1km of the property being baited.
- All relevant stakeholders must be notified at least 72 hrs before baiting.
- The date baiting begins and the date of bait collection must be clearly stated on neighbour agreements and signs.
- Baits must be tied down and you must make a reasonable attempt to minimise damage to non-target wildlife.
- Baits must be collected at the end of the baiting program.
- Appropriate signage must be up for the course of the program and for a minimum of one month following the placement of the bait material.
Upon receiving a 1080 baiting request, council officers will determine the following:
- Level of impact
- Legislation requirements
- Alternative control options
- Risk to non-target wildlife
- Strategic value
- Landowner support and agreement
Information on feral pigs in the Cassowary Coast region, can be found in the following extract from the local area Biosecurity Plan.
Council can assist landowners to control Feral Pigs by loaning a pig trap or with 1080 baiting.
Council loans pig traps to landowners. A $200 deposit is required, and the landowner/s must be able to transport the trap safely and dispose of feral pigs caught in the trap. View the Pig Trap Hire form, call Council, or visit the Tully or Innisfail Council offices.
View and Download the Trapping Feral Pigs on the Cassowary Coast - A Practical Guide.
1080 baiting is available to landowners if certain conditions are met.
Please read the Queensland Health, Departmental Standard, Dealing with restricted S7 poisions for invasive animal control.
Hog hopper baiting stations are also available to be borrowed from Council to eliminate off-target damage from the use of 1080, and to allow 1080 to be used in wet conditions.
Land owners and occupiers are required by law to control pests on their land. Rats and mice are not only a nuisance, they can carry and transmit diseases to humans.
Council officers investigate complaints about rodent-breeding sites and can issue notices to residents or owners of properties as required.
To report rodent-breeding sites please contact Council's customer service team by phoning 1300 763 903.
Marine stingers can be found in North Queensland waters during the summer months, often from October through to May, and you can check the North Queensland Surf Lifesaving website to see whether beach swimming enclosures (stinger nets) are in the water or have been taken out.
When stinger nets are in place, you should only swim in the ocean if you are inside the nets. Protective clothing is recommended.
There are stinger net swimming enclosures on the Cassowary Coast at:
- Etty Bay near Innisfail
- Kurrimine Beach
- North Mission and South Mission Beach
In addition, there are public swimming pools at Innisfail, Tully, Mission Beach and Cardwell. For more information see Council's Swimming Pools page.
Parks and Natural Environment
The Cassowary Coast is known for its many picturesque beaches - and we want to keep them looking this way for residents, tourists and wildlife.
There are a number of ways we keep our beaches and foreshores in good condition.
It is an offence to remove or damage any vegetation on beaches, foreshores, river esplanades, roads or other council-controlled land. Similarly, disposal of green waste such as lawn clippings, palm fronds, coconuts and other material is not permitted on council land.
Pedestrian access to the beach is via the designated access points. Designated beach access points help to minimise damage to the fragile beach dune environment so please use them.
Vehicles are not permitted to be driven on the beach, foreshore and foredunes. In locations where beach ladders or beach ramps are provided to launch boats, vehicles can access the beach adjacent to the ladder or ramp for that specific purpose. After launching, vehicles must leave the beach.
For more information see Caring for Our Beaches.
Do you have any used chemical containers that you want to get rid of?
Drum Muster is an environmentally-friendly way to do this.
Cassowary Coast Regional Council has drop-off points for the recycling of cleaned chemical containers, as part of its drive to make the region an even cleaner, greener place to live.
Council is part of a national program involving hundreds of other local governments.
All you need to do is clean your containers (please triple rinse) so they are free of any chemical residue.
Phone Council on 1300 763 903 to find out your nearest Drum Muster collection point.
Visit Drum Muster to find out more about the program, container eligibility and cleanliness standards for containers.
Chemclear is a related program for chemical drums which are:
- not eligible for the Drum Muster collections
- unable to be washed out
- full of chemicals
- containers for an unknown chemical.
There is an annual Chemclear collection.
Chemclear organisers can pick drums up for free from private properties if they have been registered as pick-up sites.
To register for Chemclear, call 1800 008 182 or visit the Chemclear website at www.chemclear.com.au
Cassowary Coast Regional Council manages vegetation on council-controlled land, and can assist with management of dangerous trees and other vegetation complaints.
Contact Customer Service on 1300 7630 903 for further enquiries.
For properties backing onto state land or national parks, contact the State Government's Department of Environment and Resource Management (DERM).
Land owners must ensure their land does not pose a public health or safety risk. Council regularly inspects the region for overgrown lots and issues notices to property owners to mow or clear their land in accordance with Council's Local Law.
Overgrown allotments can be reported to Council via the below form. All reported issues will be investigated by a Council officer.
Councils has a small revegetation unit which undertakes work on council land or contracted work on private properties. Many other small groups and environmental organisations also undertake revegetation in the region.
Council runs a small program supporting schools and service clubs undertaking small revegetation projects such as wildlife gardens, butterfly and bush tucker gardens. We can provide technical knowledge, planning assistance and species selection, and we facilitate a number of small activities each year. To learn more about this ring our natural environment coordinator on (07) 4043 9178 or Customer Service on 1300 763 903.
Tropical Tree Day (Planet Ark's National Tree Day) is also supported. Contact Council to learn how we can help you plan and register a site.
Laws exist in Queensland relating to water pollution and the potential for water pollution, relating to the release of a contaminant into a waterway and the placing of a contaminant where it could be expected to move or be carried by rainfall into a drain, gutter, creek, river or other body of water.
Contaminants include things such as oil (including vegetable oil), paint, lawn clippings and other vegetation, concrete slurry, batteries, tyres etc. For a comprehensive list of prohibited substances please contact Council's Environmental Services section on 1300 763 903.
Significant fines and penalties exist and Council officers will investigate any valid complaints received.
River Improvement Trusts play a major role in managing North Queensland's rivers.
The Cassowary Coast River Improvement Trust is a statutory authority constituted under the River Improvement Trust Act 1940. The Trust area is the whole of the Cassowary Coast Regional Council area.
The Act provides the Trust with various powers including raising funds, entering land, occupying land, entering into contracts and carrying out works. It also provides directions on management issues for the region's river systems, tributaries and catchments.
The primary role of the Trust is to plan, engineer, undertake and maintain stream improvement works designed to improve and protect rivers and streams in the trust area, with a focus on the major rivers, streams and their tributaries. The Trust manages the impact of rivers on land and has a planning role through identifying areas where inappropriate land uses would affect river processes.
The Trust's main responsibilities are:
- working to repair flood damage to the bed and banks of waterways
- planning, implementing and maintaining flood mitigation works
- regulating activities which have the potential to worsen flooding or cause riverbank erosion
- working with landholders and community groups in strategic planning to achieve stable catchments and river systems
- managing and protecting riparian and riverine vegetation
- securing funding for projects to protect and enhance the region's rivers and streams.
The Trust can be contacted via the Innisfail office of the Cassowary Coast Regional Council, 70 Rankin Street, via mail (Cassowary Coast River Improvement Trust, PO Box 887, Innisfail Qld 4860), by phone 1300 763 903 and by email email@example.com