More details emerge about scaly M’boro mystery
MORE details have emerged after 15 scaly Northern Territory natives were discovered in bushland near Maryborough.
The Department of Environment and Science has revealed a forestry worker stumbled across the box of carpet python hatchlings in Tuan in June.
The worker then handed them over to a wildlife officer from the Queensland Parks and Wildlife Service.
The Chronicle understands because of the way the snakes were packaged, they had likely been prepared for pick up by a local linked to a wildlife smuggling ring.
Rather than ending up on the black market, the snakes were assessed by vets, found to be healthy and sent to the RSPCA where they were rehomed to licenced snake owners.
The species of snake, morelia bredli, is commonly found in the Northern Territory.
“The illegal trade, keeping and movement of reptiles can negatively impact on wild populations, especially when threatened species are involved,” a spokeswoman from the department said.
“Many reptiles unlawfully taken from the wild die or become seriously ill, especially when being shipped interstate or overseas.
“The maximum penalty for taking, keeping or selling wildlife without a permit is $391,650 or two years in prison.”
Abandoning captive-bred native animals is illegal and carries a maximum penalty of $110,055.
Anyone with information about these snakes, the illegal trade of native wildlife or abandoning captive-bred native animals should call DES on 1300 130 372 or Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000.