Empty ammunition found at greyhound dumping ground

GRAVEYARD: The remains of a dead greyhound in the Vera Scarth-Johnson Wildflower Reserve near Coonarr Beach. Photo: Mike Knott / NewsMail
GRAVEYARD: The remains of a dead greyhound in the Vera Scarth-Johnson Wildflower Reserve near Coonarr Beach. Photo: Mike Knott / NewsMail Mike Knott

POLICE suspect a reserve near Bundaberg that became a graveyard for 55 greyhounds could be a "common knowledge dumping ground" in the industry.

A member of the public stumbled across the greyhound bodies in a reserve in the Coonarr area, near Bundaberg, and reported the horrific find to the local RSPCA inspector.

Initial investigations lead police to believe the greyhounds carcasses had been dumped over time.

It is also possible the greyhounds were retired or underperforming racing dogs .

Rifle casings found scattered in the area suggest the dogs were shot and disposed of at the site.

Queensland Police Detective Superintendent Mark Ainsworth told media on Thursday morning the area appeared to be a "common knowledge dumping ground".

"Some of the greyhounds are in different states of decay and that would sort of indicate to us that they've been dumped over varying periods of time," he said.

Police were not sure on Thursday where the dogs came from or their identities.

Authorities would not comment on whether the dogs were microchipped.

But RSPCA chief operations inspector Daniel Young said it was common practice for greyhounds to be chipped.

Det Ainsworth said post mortems would be conducted on the dogs to determine how they died.

"We will certainly be throwing every avenue of investigative tools into identifying the people responsible for the death of these dogs."

He also confirmed a number of empty .22 shells were found in the area.

Det Ainsworth said the fact the area was known to be a bushfire hot spot also would form part of the police investigation.

He said the nearby Coonarr Beach was a popular place for trainers to exercise greyhounds.

"So we believe there is quite a bit of activity in the vicinity of greyhounds."

But those responsible may not be from the Bundaberg area.

"They may be from the south east corner or other parts of Queensland," he said.

This gruesome discovery comes as investigations continue into the live baiting scandal, which has rocked the greyhound industry since February.

It was revealed that live animals, including possums, rabbits and piglets, were used to train the racing greyhounds.

Det Ainsworth said they had arrested eight people and laid 31 animal cruelty charges following the revelations.

But he admitted "we have not even tipped the iceberg as yet".

"As a result of our investigations since February 23 and the investigations that are being conducted up in the Bundaberg area over the last 24 hours, we have some significant information that we are acting upon," he said.

Det Ainsworth asked if anyone in the Coonarr area who may have witnessed or may know people who use the area frequently, especially those with greyhound trailers, to come forward.

He also asked people in the greyhound racing industry to come forward and be a part of the solution, not the problem.

"I appeal to people within the greyhound racing industry in Queensland, you know who you are, you know what you've been involved in, now is the time to stand up and be counted to come forward before we start knocking on your door."

Anyone with information are urged to phone Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000.


Topics:  animal cruelty bundaberg greyhounds live baiting police

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