A DEAD kangaroo was found tied to a deck chair near Cobram on the Australia Day long weekend in one of the worst cases of animal cruelty two wildlife carers had seen.
A mother and her young children were canoeing on the Murray River near popular camping spot Dead River Beach on Monday when they saw the decomposed animal cable-tied to a deck chair on the shore with a soft drink can cable-tied to its paw.
Wildlife carers Kylee Donkers and her husband James Leonard, from Dutch Thunder Wildlife Care and Rescue in Koonoomoo, were notified.
“I’ve never come across something so feral,” Mr Leonard said.
Given the kangaroo’s decomposition, Ms Donkers was unsure when and how it was killed, but with the hot weather, it was likely it occurred on the Australia Day weekend.
“How un-Australian is that?” she said.
“They zip-tied and posed it as though it was chilling out and they’d zip-tied a soft drink can to it ... I don’t know how someone could do that.”
Cobram police and the Department of Environment and Primary Industries are investigating.
The department’s compliance manager Geoff McClure said the area would have been busy.
“We believe other campers and boat users would have seen it during Australia Day weekend,” Mr McClure said.
“There were hundreds of people going up and down the river and we are hoping someone can shed some light on when it was first sighted and any suspicious behaviour prior to this.”
Mr McClure said there were no signs of a struggle or gunshot wound to the kangaroo.
“It is possible it was hit by a car and moved to where it was found,” he said.
He said the animal was protected under the Wildlife Act 1975 and those responsible could face serious penalties including a $36,000 fine or two-years imprisonment.
Anyone with information — who saw any suspicious behaviour — can report it anonymously to the DEPI on 136 186 or Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000.