Dingo attack

Submitted: Monday, Jul 23, 2018 at 11:23
ThreadID: 137022 Views:1434 Replies:7 FollowUps:2
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Although this was on a minesite it is also a scenario that we find ourselves in when camping or stopping for lunch in remote areas. I copied and paste the article from the West Australian newspaper:

A fly-in fly-out worker mauled by three dingoes at an East Pilbara minesite is in Royal Perth Hospital with deep wounds to her legs, arms and body.

The 54-year-old was sitting having a sandwich at an outdoor barbecue area — a designated safe eating place — at the Telfer Mine on Wednesday when a young dingo approached, her family says.

Knowing the animal would likely try to take the food, and that feeding dingoes results in instant dismissal from the site, she put her food in a rubbish bin.

The worker’s family says as she was doing that, the dingo took off with her mobile phone.

She followed and saw the phone discarded in a bush.

Her family said she decided not to grab the phone when she saw two other dingoes nearby and instead turned to walk away.

Her family said that was when the three dingoes launched their attack, biting her legs and arms as she tried desperately to stay on her feet and screamed for help.

“She had bites everywhere but her head,” relatives said. “She said she was screaming for help for nearly 10 minutes before somebody came and helped get the dogs off her ... we’re not sure how.”

She was treated at the mine by a first aid worker before being taken to Perth for treatment and was last night in a serious but stable condition.

She has had two operations at Royal Perth Hospital and will need plastic surgery. Her family are not yet sure if she will fully recover from her injuries.

The woman was at Telfer doing security work for a shut-down at the gold and copper mine.

Her family said they were grateful she was alive and had not ended up on the ground during the attack.

“If they got her down they would have gone for the throat,” her family said.

They said they had been devastated to see the extent of her injuries and have spoken out to warn anyone working or travelling in remote parts of WA about the risk posed by dingoes.
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Reply By: Les - PK Ranger - Monday, Jul 23, 2018 at 13:13

Monday, Jul 23, 2018 at 13:13
Going through there a few weeks ago, we saw many dingoes, and also mixed breed wild dogs.
Some of these mogrels interbred with dingoes certainly looked like full blood dingoes, but some are much stronger and seemingly not as (normally) timid.

The poor woman still has shocking injuries, that she may lose a leg is a bad mauling.

At Well 33 where we camped a couple of nights going east and west at differnt stages, we saw a lot of the mongrels, and thought within our group they would be a lot more risk than pure dingoes.

One of a few news sites report today . . .
Suspected dingo attack
AnswerID: 620294

Follow Up By: Joe Fury - Monday, Jul 23, 2018 at 16:31

Monday, Jul 23, 2018 at 16:31
G'day Les/Stuart

The wild dog scenario in the inland Pilbara and no doubt across remote parts of Australia is very real and should not be taken lightly, the more we as travelers encroach on their domain regardless of how well cattle/sheep graziers and even mining companies manage their respective 'wild dog' populations, people encounters with these opportunistic hunter scavengers is genuinely dangerous.

I've had a couple of close calls in the past, but by sheer luck more than good management the dogs just watched then disappeared, I was on both occasions alone but fairly close to the vehicle ~ was I nervous, yes most certainly.

The news paper clip is from last Wednesday's North West Telegraph.


Safe travels: Joe
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FollowupID: 892708

Reply By: Member - Len & Rhoda - Monday, Jul 23, 2018 at 16:27

Monday, Jul 23, 2018 at 16:27
An unfortunate incident. We have to start differentiating between Dingoes and "Wild Dogs", there aren't many pure dingoes left and it is only in the remotest of locations well removed from any communities that you are likely to see one. Also we need to stop feeling sorry for them when we do see them and not encourage them to associate humans with a free feed.
AnswerID: 620298

Reply By: CSeaJay - Monday, Jul 23, 2018 at 16:58

Monday, Jul 23, 2018 at 16:58
I agree, it is the wild dogs "mongrels" that are more dangerous. In my experience (as a remote traveller over decades not a fauna expert) I have respect but little fear of the pure Dingo, but the interbred dingo/dog is another animal altogether.
AnswerID: 620300

Reply By: Gaynor - Tuesday, Jul 24, 2018 at 00:55

Tuesday, Jul 24, 2018 at 00:55
Different areas, different animals. Canning Stock Route dingoes are not aggressive. Walked with them for 66 days. Curious, yes. Hungry, yes. But not aggressive. Please leave them be out in this desert region. It is their home.
AnswerID: 620313

Reply By: AlanTH - Tuesday, Jul 24, 2018 at 09:24

Tuesday, Jul 24, 2018 at 09:24
I worked at Telfer nearly 40 years ago and dingoes used to wander through the contractors camp quite often. They even sat around in the bottom of the open pit watching trucks go past!
Some of those in the camp got fed as there was no such sacking policy back then.
Most of those that fed them were girls....
I remember a driller mate of mine saying that it felt quite strange sitting on his drill at night surrounded by dingoes. Knowing him I suspect they were more in danger than he was. :)
I think the dogs were probably more pure bred back then than now.
AlanTH.

AnswerID: 620321

Reply By: Ron N - Tuesday, Jul 24, 2018 at 11:33

Tuesday, Jul 24, 2018 at 11:33
It always pays to remember that dingoes are canines, and pack animals, pretty much the same in behaviour, as all domestic dogs and wolves.

You never turn your back on canines, particularly when there are two or more.
They will "work" you, treating you exactly as any other prey.
It's called "prey drive", because canines are primarily hunters and predators.

Dingoes don't take long to lose their fear of humans, because most humans don't show aggression towards them - and humans provide food.

If you adopt an aggressive attitude towards threatening dingoes, such as picking up a big stick, and even throwing stones at them, the dingoes will become more wary of you, as they will prefer flight to attack, virtually every time - provided they have room to get away, and don't feel trapped.

If confronted by a number of dingoes, it pays to remain calm, don't turn away from them, keep facing them, and walk away slowly, backwards.
If necessary, throw them any food you have, this will distract them, and give you time to retreat.

Dingoes are curious, they are food-driven, and they rapidly understand aggression towards them, and they will back off if they realise they are facing a stronger, more aggressive, and bigger animal.
Remember, we are much bigger than them physically, so they become more wary, once we show aggression towards them.

Turn your back on them and start moving away rapidly, and you are immediately identifying to them that you are weak and frightened prey, running away from them, and they go into "prey drive" mode.

Cheers, Ron.
AnswerID: 620324

Follow Up By: Member - David M (SA) - Tuesday, Jul 24, 2018 at 16:41

Tuesday, Jul 24, 2018 at 16:41
And be very careful at the Nullarbor roadhouse as you leave to go back to your caravan,truckies hamburger in hand. Dingo and mate will slip silently up behind you and try to help themselves to some takeaway. :)
Dave.
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FollowupID: 892740

Reply By: Member - bungarra (WA) - Saturday, Jul 28, 2018 at 13:38

Saturday, Jul 28, 2018 at 13:38
This appears to be an incident just waiting to happen. My experience of "wild pure" bred dingoes is such that they are both curious & wary, shy and simply do not interact with us humans.....

Unless of course they have become conditioned to have no fear and we are a food source.

I have travelled (as many on here have done) through some very remote country over the years and apart from footprints left around my camp during the night I have only ever seen them at a distance or a fleeting glimpse if I surprised one. Just occasionally one may linger and check me out from a distance until curiosity is overcome by their survival instincts.

I also do a lot of prospecting which obviously indicates I am on foot, alone and some considerable distance from my camp/vehicle or mate. I remain vigilant, conscious of the possibilities and carry on normally....Yes I do watch my back sometimes (rarely) but more aware and never alarmed.

From what I have read these "dingoes" were interacting with humans and knew them as a food source. Stupidity on behalf of management to allow these dogs to become like this and to lose their natural fear and wariness of humans.

There are communities around there that are never short of dogs and I have certainly seen some dingo cross breeds in that general are that would definitely have me very wary and on my toes!......Try being on foot in some of these communities and you will soon find yourself walking in circles. :)
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