The man who ripped the head off a local kookaburra at a WA pub has been fined $2500, after weeks of uncertainty over whether he would face charges for the act.
Perth man Daniel Welfare was seen by several witnesses at the Parkerville Tavern tearing the head off regular visitor Kevin the Kookaburra, after he became angry at the bird taking food from his plate.
Tavern owners said at the time that they were in “disbelief over the barbaric attack.”
Although Welfare was reported to the WA RSPCA and police, RSPCA spokespeople were unsure about whether they’d be able to press charges, thanks to a loophole in the Animal Welfare Act.
The Act states that the RSPCA can only take action where an animal has suffered – and because Kevin died so quickly, it was difficult to ascertain whether any suffering took place.
However, the RSPCA told the media that “the incident with Kevin the Kookaburra may have contravened laws designed specifically to protect native wildlife.”
It’s under these laws that Welfare has copped the fine, with the Department of Biodiversity, Conservation and Attractions saying:
“Thanks to the assistance of WA Police Force, and staff and patrons at the Parkerville Tavern, and individual has been issued with a $2500 infringement for ‘the unlawful take of fauna’.
This is the first time a person has been fined the maximum amount for this type of offence since new laws came into force on January 1, 2019.
Even though kookaburras are not native to Western Australia, they are classified as fauna under the act, which means people must not take or disturb them without lawful authority.”
The last we heard of Daniel Welfare was when he reportedly fled the country after receiving death threats over social media. It’s yet to be seen whether he will return to face the fine.Source: WA Today