Cyclone Yasi Response 04/04/11


  • DERM has established 99 feed stations from the Cardwell Range north to Flying Fish Point
  • 10,500 kg of fruit has been distributed, mainly to feeding stations.
  • Despite the wet weather, crews have been able to access most feed stations from their work bases at Innisfail, Cardwell and Garners Beach.
  • Over four hundred hours of volunteer time has been committed to the program and over 30 landholders are supporting feed stations.
  • Coles and Woolworths are still providing fruit donations but fruit requirements have now exceeded supply so limited purchases are having to be made.
  • Regrettably, two cassowaries have died as a result of vehicle strike – one on the Mission Beach–Tully Road and another near Malanda. This is a timely reminder to drive with care in cassowary habitat.
  • A further two cassowaries have died as a result of other injuries, reminding us that even though cassowaries are robust, they are still susceptible to injury. Vet assessment has not been able to determine the cause of their injuries. Community advice about these birds has enabled a timely response — important for animal welfare, and greatly appreciated by DERM crews. See below for contact details:

To report a cassowary sighting, please email

To report a sick, injured or orphaned bird, call DERM on 1300 130 372.

DERM staff have been called to a number of incidents where cassowaries have been causing concern for property owners. Regrettably, it seems that this behaviour is a result of property owners establishing their own feed stations, often too close to houses and managed in a way that could put the safety of the public and cassowaries at risk (e.g. feeding three times a day in the presence of the bird, and with unsuitable foods). This action is illegal and can be very dangerous. DERM is working with the community as part of the response program, and sadly this small number of property owners could create an unsafe situation and compromise other efforts in these areas.

Volunteers are still needed at Garner’s Beach and Innisfail QPWS to help cut up fruit. DERM passes on its thanks to all the volunteers, many of them repeat supporters, for all their time and effort. If you’re able to volunteer at any time, but particularly over the Easter period (or the public holidays in May and June), please contact Jodie who is drawing up a roster:

Latest post-cyclone updates: