Kangaroos causing havoc on region's roads

ACCIDENT PRONE: Motorists are seeing more roos along the roads.
ACCIDENT PRONE: Motorists are seeing more roos along the roads.

ROOS are wreaking havoc on our roads, with dry weather driving the animals closer to highways and main roads in search of food.

Kerrie Rule, Wildlife Information, Rescue and Education Service (WIRES) Central North mammal coordinator, said there has been a fair bit of action on local roads involving kangaroos lately.

“The days are getting longer and it has been so dry in the paddocks, they’ve been coming to the side of the roads looking for food,” Ms Rule told The Leader.

“As the days get longer, people are knocking-off from work in the late afternoon, just when the roos are coming down to the roads looking for their green picks.”

The days are getting longer and it has been so dry in the paddocks, they’ve been coming to the side of the roads looking for food.

WIRES Kerrie Rule

Ms Rule said the kangaroos were also coming down into residential areas in East Tamworth and Moore Creek areas and that dawn and dusk were the more active times for the animals.

While more of the native animals have been noticed by motorists, Ms Rule said the region could do a lot better when it came to notifying WIRES about roos which have been hit.

She also issued another warning about caring for injured animals.

“If people do find something, don’t attempt to raise it yourself, call WIRES,” she said.

According to NRMA Insurance, claims for kangaroo collisions on New England roads have remained steady over the last three years.

On Tamworth roads, there were 247 claims for roo-related accidents between 2014 and 2016.

“NRMA Insurance claims data shows that kangaroos account for more than 80 per cent of all animal collisions in Australia, followed by dogs, wombats, cattle and cats,” a spokesperson said.

“If you see an animal on or near the road, you should try and brake, but not swerve to avoid a collision.

“If you do hit an animal, you can contact a local veterinarian or wildlife rescue centre such as WIRES on 1300 094 737. If it is a road hazard, you can also contact the local police station.”

Tamworth emergency services responded to a single vehicle accident on the New England Highway five kilometres north of Nemingha on Monday evening. Police are investigating reports the driver swerved to miss a roo.

The Leader also understands a cyclist struck a kangaroo on Forest Rd just before dawn on Tuesday morning.