Emu seeks seachange

An emu with an identity crisis was seen combing the beach on the west side last Tuesday.

And it wasn’t the first sighting of an emu walking through the city, with one picked up near the Foodland carpark the previous Thursday.

Residents of Cobbin Street saw the emu casually walking from the northern end of the street. It was also spotted at the pub before SA Arid Lands rangers picked it up.

While an emu wandering Port Augusta’s streets is a rare sight to be seen, SA Arid Lands manager of public lands Ken Anderson said we could expect to see more due to the warmer weather. 

“It’s becoming more common, but it’s not abnormal given Port Augusta’s proximity to South Australia’s arid lands,” Mr Anderson said.

“Kangaroos and emus are drawn closer into town in search of food and water.”

He said the increase in native wildlife wandering into town is due to a decrease of food and water sources “caused by the lack of rain and increase of temperatures”. 

When emus are spotted in town, Mr Anderson suggested residents should contact the Port Augusta City Council. 

The two emus which were picked up over the past two weeks were immobilised by Department of Environment, Water and Natural Resources staff, who then confined the animal for transport.

“Emus are generally taken out toward Woomera Road a suitable distance so they can reunite with their mob,” Mr Anderson said.

No emus have been harmed in the process of returning them to the wild.

SEASIDE HOLIDAY:  Transcontinental journalist Ryan Smith followed an emu around on the westside beach last week, after it had walked south into Port Augusta in search of food and water, and perhaps a change of scenery.

SEASIDE HOLIDAY: Transcontinental journalist Ryan Smith followed an emu around on the westside beach last week, after it had walked south into Port Augusta in search of food and water, and perhaps a change of scenery.