Monday, March 21, 2011

Wildcare Alice Springs plans to reduce the impact of discarded aluminium cans as a long-term killer of wildlife

A Spiny-tailed Monitor, Varanus acanthurus found dead at the base of Mt. Gillen with its head stuck in an aluminium can which may have been discarded many years ago.
This is a sad, but all too common story. Aluminium cans seem to have a unique ability to become death-traps for curious wildlife. The aluminium can featured in this picture is so old and faded that the branding is barely visible. A discarded aluminium can may sit in the landscape for decades before claiming a victim like this. They can trap moisture or small invertebrates and act as an effective trap for ground foraging reptiles. I've seen many different snakes and lizards trapped in exactly this way and it is a real shame.

Rex Neindorf from the Alice Springs Reptile Centre has had 8 Varanid lizards handed in with their heads trapped in cans like this in just the last 2 weeks. As he pointed out, if there are this many being found and brought into organisations like Wildcare, imagine how many hundreds or even thousands of these animals are out in the country dying slow deaths as a result of thoughtless littering along roads and in towns.

In an effort to reduce this problem and raise much needed funds, Wildcare Alice Springs are encouraging folks to recycle as much as they can, and have started their own service to help out. For people who don't have the ability to cart their recycling collections out to the processing centre to collect their refund, Wildcare will come to your home and collect your recycling for you and take it to the processing centre. This is a free service of course, but relies on Wildcare being able to keep your refund in return for their efforts.

They hope that this will encourage more people to recycle thus reducing the sort of impact on wildlife depicted above. As a bonus it will trickle a few more dollars into a busy and important community organisation which can really use them.

To register your interest and get your recycling picked up by Wildcare, they can be contacted on;

0419 221 128

Give them a ring now and keep those cans away from our wildlife.

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