In 1993 naturalist Harry Frauca received a bite 2 cm deep into the flesh of his leg, right through his rubber boot, trousers and thick woollen socks.

In a different incident a young boy entered an enclosure to feed a wombat at a caravan park, he was charged, knocked over, bitten, and scratched all over.

 

On this day …….. 5th of August 1898

A boy named Watts was crossing a paddock on Oliver Anketell’s farm near Dandenong, Victoria, on this day in 1898 when a large eagle swooped down and grabbed his dog, burying it’s talons in to it’s back. The bird rose in the air with the dog before the boy could come to the rescue. The dog howled in pain as it struggled in vain attempts to free it’s self. They were high in the air before the dog managed to catch it’s captor’s wings and hold on. The eagle used it’s beak with terrible effects, but the dog instinctively kept it’s hold on the wing, and the pair, tumbling over and over as they fell to the ground. The boy ran to his dog’ said and managed to kill the eagle by bludgeoning it to death with heavy blows to the head from his stout walking stick. The dog was alive but badly injured around the head and body from attacks by the birds claws and beak. The eagle measured two metres from tip to tip of it’s wings. The dog which weighted about 10kg made a good recovery.

 

According to statistics from the Victorian Injury Surveillance Unit, 28,128 Victorians were injured by animals between July 2004 and June 2007, that is nearly 10 000 a year. But to break that down, almost 7700 Victorians have been taken to hospital during this time after being attacked by dogs. Horses were second on the list, killing two people and injuring a further 5628. Mosquito killed two people and sent 256 more to hospital. 9922 Victorians were hurt by creepy-crawlies, including spiders, bees, wasps, ticks, ants, centipedes and even scorpions. More unusual statistics were that close to 50 Victorians were attacked by monkeys. Family pets such as cats, rabbits and guinea pigs injured 1117 people, and 450 people ended up at a hospital with insects stuck in eyes, nose or ears. Chickens injured 92 people, and stingrays over 50 people. Six people had to be treated after encountering ducks and alpacas. Wombats, kangaroos, wallabies, possums and dingoes were responsible for attacks on 231 people. And 1153 Victorians were attacked in their sleep or while resting or eating.

 

In April 2007 thirteen year old Ella Murphy was standing on her surfboard tow-surfing behind a boat near Lancelin, north of Perth. Unexpectedly a 300kg sea lion burst out from the water, grabbed her by the head and knocked her off her surf board. As she lay in the water the monster seemed to be preparing for a second charge but the driver of the boat managed to put the boat between her and the sea lion. Ella ended up with a broken jaw, a big wound under her chin, and three missing teeth.

 

The town of Nhulunbuy lies in a remote corner of the Northern Territory and is surrounded by bush land where wild buffaloes roam free. In May 2005 a 46 year old man was killed on the town’s outskirts by a wild buffalo when he went for a walk to check the water supply line to his house. He had his two dogs with him that survived and returned to the house, which alerted his family that something had to be wrong. Unfortunately there was a bush fire in the area at the same time which hindered the search and burned the man’s body before it could be found. Police have started hunting buffaloes as this was far from the first incident, other people had been attacked, although nobody had been killed by buffaloes in the town since April 1993. In September 2007 a 49 year old woman from Melbourne was holidaying at Peppers Seven Spirit Bay resort on the Cobourg Peninsula and while she was enjoying a nice stroll along the beach with a couple of friends a wild buffalo charged them and attacked her. A tour guide that was with her at the time gave her first aid and she was flown to Darwin hospital by helicopter.

 

In December 2003 the Gold Coast Bulletin reported that a middle-aged man was walking along a track in the Burleigh Heads National Park when he fell into a mating hole of a brush turkey who then approached the man and tried to bury him in a mating ritual. The man spent some time in the hole until a passer-by saw him and alerted emergency services. Several fire crews attended the bizarre scene to pull the man from the hole who was left shaken but suffering only minor injuries. Queensland Parks and Wildlife ranger Sergio Norambuena said December was the mating season for brush turkeys when they build a massive mound or hole that can end up three metres wide and several metres high to attract the opposite sex and the mound is later used to incubate the eggs. A week ago signs warning people of wild turkeys were erected in the national park.

 

Certainly per European history shows Tasmanian Tigers-Zebra Wolfs (Thylacine) roamed large parts of main land Australia. There is plenty of evidence in fossil remains and Aboriginal cave art. But is it possible they still lived in Victoria as little as 100 years ago. Interesting idea when the last known Thylacine died at the Hobart Zoo on the 7th of September 1936, and Thylacine’s were declared extinct by international standards in 1986. However there are many accounts of wolf-lions-tiger like animals killing live stock through Gippsland, North East and central Victoria and as far as Tantanoola in South Australia. Below is an account of animal killed by a farmer on the 29th June 1916 at Mirboo North, South Gippsland, Victoria.

The sheep-killing animal that was found poisoned in Mr J. Gilfedder’s paddock, close to the Mirboo North township, Victoria recently, does not appear to be either a dingo or a fox. It was two or three times as large as either of those animals. It had the legs, paws and nails of a dog, and the snout and tail of a fox or a dingo. Its mode of killing sheep was to worry their rumps and pull away some of the entrails. Residents who saw-it say that it was a cross between a dingo or a fox and a dog. To ascertain if possible what the animal was, Mr. Gilfedder intends sending the skull, claws and tail to the Director of the Melbourne Zoo, who is recognised as an authority on animals. Some people at Yinnar who had sheep destroyed in the way described poisoned the carcases; but the animal would not take the bait. A successful way to destroy any other of such breed as turn up among sheep is to skin rabbits and put them in a fire, and thus destroy the smell of the hands, and use one as a trail, and cut others, and lay the baits along the trail, without touching them with the hands. This was the method Mr Gilfedder used. Since the death of the animal we have not heard of any sheep being worried around the district. Mr Gilfedder received the following letter from Mr D. Gibson, of the National Bank, Maffra: – “Dear Sir, – I saw in the paper some few days ago that you had poisoned an animal, somewhat like a dingo, but larger, that had been destroying your sheep. I enclose a rough sketch of the Tasmanian zebra wolf, in the hope that it may enable you to identify it with that animal. I and others have seen them up in the mountains; but the fact of their being indigenous to Victoria has never been established by their capture. Probably they are the animal vaguely called the ‘Tantanoola tiger’ and the ‘Morwell lion,’ which has been seen in so many localities. The zebra wolf is a marsupial, coloured from French-grey to russet brown, according to the season, and striped with dark brown to black on back and tail, and less conspicuously on the legs. The coat is short and close, build very strong, pads especially large for its size, powerful hindquarters, progresses either at a trot or by long bounds, height at shoulder 2ft. 6in. to 3ft. I have seen one in captivity which stood on its hind legs over 5ft. high. They are night prowlers, and carry their young in a pouch. They use hollow logs, etc., to camp in, and cover long distances, rarely coming out in the daylight. This is the reason why they have escaped capture so long. The skin or cleaned skeleton would be eagerly purchased by either Melbourne Zoo (D. Le Soeuf), or the National Gallery Museum. Probably they would fetch £20 or so; so they are worth saving.”

Up to 4 cm. in length, Australia’s Bulldog Ants are the biggest ants in the world and can be found in any part of Australia. They killed a farmer in Victoria in 1988 but this is one of only three deaths by this species. Authorities are more worried about the South American fire ant that has made it into Australia and has been found around Brisbane. Being very aggressive and having a powerful sting they have killed new born calves and birds and are considered quite able to kill people, authorities have gone to considerable trouble to try and eradicate this ant.

 

An Australian emu escaped from a farm in the Marlborough Sounds in New Zealand’s South Island in November 2010. The local cop was called and when he arrived on the scene he saw the emu chasing a group of kids down the street in Ocean Bay. With the help of a few locals the emu was herded into a paddock until he was taken back to the farm.

 

Several people have reported seeing a giant eel in the Yarra river near Warburton, Victoria. He is reported to have taken a Jack Russel dog, a goose that someone was feeding at the time, and a fisherman was dragged into the water in April 2005 by something huge and unknown, most like the giant eel.

 

Kevin Butler lived in the US with his Aussie cockatoo Bird as a pet. Kevin was found dead one day in 2002 with multiple stabwounds and Bird was found dead in the kitchen with a fork in his back and a leg cut off. Police later charged Daniel Torres with the murder, having found his DNA in Bird’s beak. It turned out that while Daniel tried to kill Kevin, the Aussie superhero Bird violently pecked at Daniel’s head and clawed at his skin in a desperate effort to save his owner!

 

In November 2009 it was reported that up to 6000 feral camels in search of water had invaded Docker River, a small Aboriginal community of about 350 people located about 500km southwest of Alice Springs. Local residents had been afraid to leave their homes for some time. The camels have torn up the main waterpipes and sewerage pipes, made the town’s airport unusable and contaminated the town’s water supply.

The Northern Territory government decided to take action and announced $49,000 in emergency funding for a cull in which helicopters will be used to herd the animals outside the town, where the camels will be shot and left to decay in the desert.