Padbury conservationist Doug Coughran’s final newspaper correspondence


The Pacific gull. Photograph: Doug Coughran
The Pacific gull. Photograph: Doug Coughran

RIGHT to the end, Doug Coughran was concerned for the welfare of the wildlife around him. The Padbury conservation advocate, who died this month from cancer, was a regular contributor to Community News. Here is some of his last correspondence to us:

I photographed this adult Pacific gull on the north-west corner of Hillarys harbour yesterday, sitting on top of one of the floodlights.

Its left leg is compromised by monofilament fishing line.

The line has cinched so tight at the ankle the blood supply to the foot has likely stopped and from its appearance, it has most likely been strung up by the foot at some stage.

There are only a few Pacific gulls along the Perth metropolitan beaches and a couple frequent our community coastline, the Marmion Marine Park. This bird like others in a tangle are a sorry sight and this can be so easily prevented.

I was wondering if the image and a few words about taking care with discarded fishing-line will prevent innocent wildlife from unnecessary agony. Thanks, I hope it helps.

–Doug

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