Land clean-up sparks protest
A POCKET of bush land tucked away in suburban Ipswich was cleared last week after a dog sustained a snake bite - despite the protests of neighbours.
The cleared land surrounds Sandy Creek and a system of native waterholes which runs behind the homes on Addison Rd in Camira.
The clearing was devastating to Sandy Smith, who has campaigned to conserve with native land since moving to the area 10 years ago.
She has pushed for the land, a sanctuary for many native animals and plants, to become environmentally protected.
Despite her efforts to conserve the land, Ms Smith heard the sound of machinery emanating from her backyard.
What was taking place left her devastated.
"It was the worst destruction. I heard the machinery and I came running down and by then they had cleared a lot," she said.
Councillor David Morrison confirmed the land was cleared by Ipswich City Council after requests from neighbours who owned the dog bitten by a snake. \The land was cleared with an understanding put in place between ICC and neighbours that they would keep the area in a pristine condition.
"What was removed was a lot of pests and introduced species. It's not the environmental disaster as some people have made it out to be," he said.
"What some of the neighbours want to be able to do is go in their and maintain it.
"I fully support the work that has been done and I congratulate the neighbours that want to take care of it."
Cr Morrison said it is important to find the balance between development and maintaining the environment.
"We have got to respect the environment, as we do, but around residential areas we have got to respect that people would like something else, with regards to clearing."
Cr Morrison said the land could become a road, if land from the adjacent blocks is subdivided in the future.
Ms Smith could not bear any further degradation to the creek and can't understand why it isn't declared native bushland.
"I asked them years ago why they can't take it back. Why should anyone own anything leading down to a river?" she said.