Mary Valley farmer Bill Greer was pleasantly surprised to find turtles nesting in his paddock recently. Photo courtesy of Channel 7.
Mary Valley farmer Bill Greer was pleasantly surprised to find turtles nesting in his paddock recently. Photo courtesy of Channel 7. Contributed

Hare-y start to life as turtles outfox tractor

MARY Valley farmer and police officer Bill Greer swears he is not just making excuses for his likely loss of a neighbourhood bet this year.

The big detour in his ploughed rows on the Mary River could not be helped, he said.

Mr Greer, senior constable when he is in uniform and father of four the rest of the time, was sitting on his tractor when he suddenly saw a turtle in his way, forcing him to detour around it.

"I thought I would wait until it got out of the way, but then I realised it was laying eggs," he said.

Imbil farmer and police officer Bill Greer talks to Channel 7 after finding a turtle nesting on his farm while he was ploughing.
Imbil farmer and police officer Bill Greer talks to Channel 7 after finding a turtle nesting on his farm while he was ploughing. Contributed

"I was hoping I didn't interrupt things, but there were about eight or ten eggs there. She didn't seem to have finished covering them up.

"I don't know anything about turtles, so I went home and looked it up and came back and finished covering them, against birds of prey."

The couple are looking to open a bed and breakfast at their Miranda Downs property, but may now be able to include Mary River turtle watching as well.

"A nearby ginger farmer and I have a competition to see who has the straightest rows, but unfortunately I think he'll win this year," he said

"I've got quite a detour to get around those eggs," he said.

His wife Belinda said the whole family was involved.

"It's exciting," she told one television journalist, "especially around here where everyone cares about animals, especially turtles."

The turtles are expected to hatch in about eight to ten weeks and then will have to make the 20m journey to the river to get on with their lives.

Mary Valley farmer Bill Greer was pleasantly surprised to find turtles nesting in his paddock recently.
Mary Valley farmer Bill Greer was pleasantly surprised to find turtles nesting in his paddock recently. Contributed
Gympie Times


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