Police have issued advice on how Queenslanders can deal with stray cattle and other animals.
Police have issued advice on how Queenslanders can deal with stray cattle and other animals.

State faces stock recovery task

POLICE and the public around Queensland will have a difficult task recovering stock in flood-affected areas.

Police are aware of incidents where stock have strayed a few kilometres due to flood-damaged fences, while some have been sighted floating down raging rivers and becoming stranded on banks.

Farmers will be aware that with water covering food sources, surviving animals are not where they are supposed to be and are mixed up with cattle from other properties.

The bush telegraph is one way people are able to recover or find owners of stock. It is recommended that the public uses this valuable resource by letting as many people as they can know of stock they are missing or "strangers" that have been located.

If branded animals are located, people may find the possible owners via the Queensland brands database on the internet at http://ibrands.dpi.qld.gov.au/.

Stock included on the site are: cattle; horses; sheep and pigs. There are some techniques people can use to find the brands on hairy animals. Clipping, shaving and hair removal cream may prove effective, but waxing generally is not.

The National Livestock Identification System (NLIS) is a useful resource in identifying found cattle. Privacy issues restrict private access to information detailing owners of stock, but assistance may be provided by passing the tag information onto the lead agency, the Department of Employment, Economic Development and Innovation (DEEDI) via:

(a) Phone 13 25 23

(b) Fax on 07 3404 6900

(c) Email NLIS Administrator at NLIS_admin@dpi.qld.gov.au.

Disease outbreaks are of heightened concern during floods and in Queensland, it is the purpose of the Stock Act 1915, to protect the industry from disease. The NLIS is flexible enough in flood times to provide cattle owners with a number of options for returning and recovering animals:

  • Tagged or untagged cattle recovered on immediate neighbouring properties can be returned without NLIS transfers but do require waybills;
  • Tagged cattle recovered further afield require cattle movements to be recorded on the NLIS and accompanied by a waybill;
  • Untagged cattle returning home require NLIS approval. Owners should contact a Biosecurity officer or DEEDI on 13 25 23, or SARCIS for advice regarding this situation; and
  • Untagged cattle not returning home must be tagged with a post breeder (orange) tag for the property of consignment and be accompanied by a waybill and the movement recorded on the NLIS.

A complete guide to movement requirements can be located at http://www.dpi.qld.gov.au/4789_9098.htm.

Police wish to reassure the public they will investigate any complaint of stock theft and enforce the relevant laws.

People are encouraged to contact SARCIS through local police if assistance can be provided regarding the ownership of stock.

The Queensland Police Service is committed to protecting the livelihood and lifestyles of people involved in the livestock industry and encourage people to report suspicious or illegal activities.

Police need support and information from the community to solve crime. It may seem insignificant at the time, but the information provided may be an important piece in the puzzle.

Anyone with information that could assist police with their investigations should contact Crime Stoppers anonymously via 1800 333 000 or crimestoppers.com.au 24 hours a day.

Crime Stoppers is a charitable community volunteer organisation working in partnership with the Queensland Police Service.


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