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Fears cane toads have hitched ride to East Timor

ABC News - December 17, 2009

Adrienne Francis - There are renewed concerns that one of Australia's worst exotic pests may have hitchhiked to East Timor.

In September, a Timorese environmental group accused Australian peacekeepers of introducing cane toads during operations in 1999. However, it was later proved to be a case of mistaken identity.

Darwin resident Rob Wesley-Smith says a number of suspicious-looking, large, yellow toads have been spotted again on the south coast of East Timor.

"I have been told that they definitely have poison sacks on their shoulders," he said. "That is a very telling sort of identifying thing.

He said supplies have previously been delivered from Darwin to the Natarbora region in East Timor, making it possible for cane toads to have accidentally been taken there.

Mr Wesley-Smith is travelling to East Timor to examine the suspicious-looking toads.

"If in fact there are cane toads there then I think the important thing is to alert people to what they look like, what you can do to get rid of them," he said. "And we will try and get people off their butts and go out and do some night time hunting and get rid of them."