News

Noosa High students rescue stranded pony from boggy creek

The rescuers and their new friend are safely back on dry land
The rescuers and their new friend are safely back on dry land

PRINCE Philip would no doubt be delighted with the never-give-up ingenuity displayed by 12 Noosa High students in saving a trapped Shetland pony from certain death at Kin Kin Creek.

The students were returning from a canoe expedition of the Noosa Everglades as part of their bronze level Duke of Edinburgh Awards program, which Prince Philip chairs, when they spotted the small horse stuck fast in the mud beside a steep bank, shaking and exhausted.

It was a real life test of what the Duke of Edinburgh awards are all about - collectively mustering resilience, respect, endurance and teamwork.

School teacher and expedition leader Dean McMaster said the team devised a plan for half of them to leave their canoes and swim to the bank where they began to dig the pony out of the mud with their hands.

"The other students formed a protective circle around the rescue scene with their canoes," Mr McMaster said.

"After 30 minutes of exhausting work it became evident that the bank was too steep and muddy and log-congested for the animal to get out.

"The group then decided to swim the animal 200m downstream to a less steep location."

This task was given to two of the strongest swimmers, who were surrounded by a protective canoe flotilla. At the new site, the pony at first sank into the mangrove mud.

"But after another 30 minutes of determined effort the kids gave a whoop of delight, as the animal was able to struggle free," Mr McMaster said.

"The kids walked the animal to the Kinaba information centre where it was given the kids' expedition food and tethered in a safe place.

"Parks and Wildlife officers were contacted and the students are now hoping this cute little pony has been reunited with its owners."

In the end the expedition, designed to promote the students' self-esteem, paid off more than they could have ever imagined.

Mr McMaster was "very impressed" with their commitment to the execution of a "real life rescue".

"It was no easy task for the kids to dig this heavy animal out of the mud. The level of care, protection and encouragement they gave both the pony and each other in a potentially dangerous environment was commendable," he said.

"Kids like the ones on this program often get a bad wrap and, sure, they demonstrate irresponsible behaviour at times.

"In my experience, however, I have found that when faced with real life challenges, these kids usually shine through and make everyone around them very proud."

Topics:  animal welfare


Stay Connected

Update your news preferences and get the latest news delivered to your inbox.

Summer's Day still resonates

SUMMER'S DAY: Andrea Shoesmith, second right back, with the Trewantin State School students remembering Summer Steer.

Message about battery safety

Friends of Lake Weyba help clean up

CLEAN TEAM: Raffi and Trinity Sonner, aged eight and 11, are part of the Friends of Lake Weyba Clean Up Australia crew.

Clean Up Australia Day is almost here

Local Partners

Davo's expanding Noosa store

MORE than 30 years after Davo's Bait and Tackle opened in a small timber cottage on Gympie Tce, the transformation into a large, thriving business is complete.

Maleny Players have one-act plays for all tastes

Three one-act plays are coming to the hinterland

Help muscular dystrophy with much more than morning tea

TEA TIME: Raise a cup to help muscular dystrophy.

Raise a cup to help cure muscular dystrophy

Cough up for FurBall tickets and help the animals

FURBALL FRIEND: Julie Penlington, from 4Paws, with Charlie.

This is the kind of FurBall you want

Holly Valance caught up in $213m lawsuit

FORMER Neighbours star Holly Valance has been named in a lawsuit involving sordid claims against her billionaire husband and his brother.

Lifesaver for a day: One-of-a-kind Coast tour

The Mooloolaba Surf Club is launching a new tour of the club and beach that educates visitors about life a as surf lifesaver. Getaway is filming a segment about the tour with presenter Charli Robinson.

Behind-the-scenes tour of surf club attracts television appearance

Bundaberg: No one does life like us

It's the spirit of Bundaberg and it's about to go global in a $20m campaign. With celebrities coming to the rum city to shoot new commercial.

The Rum City hits screens around Australia tonight

BOOKS: Superstition a central theme in new outback thriller

Author Cassandra Austin.

Cassandra Austin is celebrating the release of her second novel

MKR recap: The secret ingredients to longevity and success

It’s chilli con carnage on MKR.

‘Turn up the heat’ means chillies. Lots of chillies.

MOVIE REVIEW: Logan doesn't pull any punches

THE WOLVERINE: Hugh Jackman in a scene from the movie Logan.

Gritty, real performances worth the gore in new X-Men movie.

Booval boy keeps winning over bride

BUILDING A BOND: Alene Khatcherian and Simon McQuillan are still going strong on Married At First Sight.

Alene Khatcherian and Simon McQuillan are still going strong

Iconic North Coast post office up for sale

HISTORY: Nicole Swain is selling the historic Bangalow Post Office building this month.

Post office comes complete with the historic Lest We Forget clock

Opponents question Sekisui's 68% support claim

VIEW: An artist's impression of Sekisui House's proposal looking towards Mount Coolum.

Developer says it has 68% support, claims which raised some eyebrows

Old fireman's hall to make way for Maccas carpark

Workers remove the roof from the old firemans hall in Limestone Street in preparation for its demolition to extend the McDonald's carpark.

Demolition workers move in on Limestone St property

Next phase of Coast's new $174m beach city revealed

ON THE TABLE: A 30-unit development has been proposed for Birtinya Island, close to the new Sunshine Coast University Hospital.

Island living opportunities on the table with latest proposal

Major Burrum Heads development to go to vote

Site development plans for the proposed lot conversion at Burrum Heads, near Beach Dr.

Councillors will vote on the lot conversions.

Ready to SELL your property?

Post Your Ad Here!