While no drug dependent crocs have been found, Power and Water do monitor the wildlife at Top End waste facilities to ensure animals are not being affected by our waste
While no drug dependent crocs have been found, Power and Water do monitor the wildlife at Top End waste facilities to ensure animals are not being affected by our waste

Crack-odiles! Do NT crocs have a drug problem?

THE Territory's Power and Water Corporation is monitoring crocs and other animals that frequent Darwin's waste ponds to ensure they are not being affected by people's drug habits and other substances flushed down the loo.

Workers regularly monitor the wildlife within the waste water treatment facilities in the Top End to ensure they aren't being adversely affected by Territorian's waste.

This week Tennessee police put a statement on their Facebook page imploring people to stop flushing their drugs as they held concerns illicit substances could be creating drug addled alligators.

Croc expert Dr Adam Britton said a large amount of drugs would need to be consumed by an alligator or crocodile for it to have any effect.

"There's plenty of evidence to show that alligators can accumulate pesticides and other biotoxins which can affect their health, but the scale of that is considerable and presumably far greater than the relatively small amount of meth flushed down the toilet," Dr Britton said.

Dr Britton doubted there would be enough drugs in Darwin's wastewater to affect crocodiles.

"It seems unlikely that enough drugs would be flushed down the dunny in the NT that it would start affecting salties, and I don't think anyone knows how these drugs might affect crocodiles anyway," he said.

A Power and Water spokeswoman said monitoring was undertaken regularly to ensure no animal in and around the waste ponds was being adversely affected.

"As part of our day-to-day work, Power and Water's monitoring programs include assessment of the behaviour of fish and other aquatic animals in the vicinity of the discharge. No adverse impacts have been observed," the spokeswoman said.

Power and Water have not observed any drug-addled crocs in the sewerage system.

Illicit substances in waste water are recorded and published in an annual report.

The latest National Wastewater Drug Monitoring Program report analysed water in December 2018 and compared data to August 2018.

A usage breakdown of methylamphetamine, cocaine, MDMA and heroin in the NT found MDMA made up 18.8 per cent of drug use while methylamphetamine made up a whopping 59 per cent.

Cocaine was at 21.4 per cent and heroin was 0.8 per cent.

NT Police would not say if they held fears of drug-addled crocodiles.



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