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Australian knife (and snake) questions...

Discussion in 'General EDC Discussion' started by mushnz, Jul 11, 2011.

  1. mushnz

    mushnz Loaded Pockets

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    I am hoping some of my trans-tasman cousins can help me here.

    I am planning a trip to northern Queensland later this month. My wife and I will be spending a couple of weeks around the Daintree rainforest, Cape Tribulation, Great Barrier reef etc.

    Does anyone know what the knife laws are in Queensland?
    I assume I can take a SAK, but what about a larger folder? Will I be ok carrying my Spyderco Tenacious?

    Secondly - what is the deal with snakes..?
    We may be camping - not way off grid, but rather beaches, camp-grounds, etc.
    Given that we will almost certainly be within an hour or so of the nearest town/doctor, will we really need to take snake-bite kits, anti-venom, etc?

    I know there are some deadly snakes in Oz, but realistically how prepared do you need to be in that sort of environment....?

    Any advice would be greatly appreciated..
     
  2. mushnz

    mushnz Loaded Pockets

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    So... no Aussies around here then...?
     
  3. JonSidneyB
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    JonSidneyB Uber Prepared
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    We have lots of Aussies, not sure where they are hiding at.
     
  4. Dizos

    Dizos Loaded Pockets

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    Hello. You are only allowed to carry a knife if you have "a good reason" to have it. I'm not sure what qualifies, but I always assumed that camping is enough of an excuse. Self defense is NOT a justified reason there. I would not recommend having a knife in sight as it may draw attention. Police in Australia can search you if they want to. For public use a Swiss Army or Leatherman is probably your best bet.

    As for snakes you have a large selection to choose from up there. The most deadly are the Taipan (hang out in tall grass, cane fields, forest edges), Death Adders (lay-and-wait predators who park along creek bottoms and trail edges, usually at night), Brown Snakes (variety of habitats though generally in the drier areas) and Mulgas, or King Browns (I only saw them inland from where you will be). Red belly black snakes hang out in the rain forest and though highly venomous are biters of last resort. All of these snakes are very deadly and can kill you quickly. A bite should be treated using a compression bandage method which slows venom travel along your lymphatic system until you can get to a hospital for antivenom. Read up on the procedure (I'm sure a Google search will sort you out) and carry a few ace bandages with you. In the rare event you get bit, try to remain calm, notify EMS and apply the compression bandage - train your travel companions. If you can't notify EMS try to get others to carry you until you can or to a vehicle and get to a hospital quickly. Don't walk around as that will allow the venom to flow in your system. There are a few other poisonous snakes there but bites from them are rare (they are all elapid snakes, the most common group in Australia). These include the Small Eyed snakes which are very common at night where you will be and are easily confused with the colubrid Slatey Grey snakes which are harmless. The Keelback snake is another harmless colubrid which can look like a Brown. Probably best not to muck with any snakes there. You will also find several varieties of python some get very large and can deliver a nasty bite which will be prone to infection. The Amethistine python is the longest (I've seen them up to 4 1/2 meters), but the Carpet Pythons and Water Pythons get quite large too and they have much thicker heavier bodies. There are smaller pythons like the Children's and Spotted which rarely get larger than a meter in length and are harmless. The green, northern and brown tree snakes are very common there and are also harmless (however the brown tree snake is technically venomous so best not to handle). There are a heap more species but the ones listed are the most common. You are going to be there during the winter so snake activity will be lower than during the hot wet months.

    Enjoy your trip! Beautiful country there. I recommend getting up into the Atherton Tablelands and doing some hikes. Emerald Creek falls is stunning and Davies Creek has some nice trails. If you like critters, bring a good flashlight and go spotlighting at night - there are a bunch of endemic marsupial tree dwellers including tree kangaroos. If you like lizards keep your eyes open for Lace Monitors (Goannas) which are huge tree lizards, Frill Neck Lizards, Blue Tongue Skinks, Boyds Forest Dragon, Water Dragons and a huge variety of geckos including cool looking highly cryptic Leaf Tail Geckos which hang out in some rainforest patches.

    Be careful driving at night, wallabies can jump in front of your car before you have time to react. I keep my periphery vision trained on the sides of the road when driving. Learning to drive on the opposite side of the road takes a little practice but is not that hard to learn, rember to keep left and to keep the drivers side towards the middle of the road. They rely on roundabouts more than traffic lights up there, whoever is already in the roundabout gets priority (ie. wait for them to pass before entering).

    Final bit of advice - learn about Stinging Tree before hiking in the rainforest. Very nasty stuff. Find a picture and learn what it looks like. If you brush against any it will hurt for months.
     
  5. critterfixer
    • In Omnia Paratus

    critterfixer Loaded Pockets

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    That is way too many venomous snakes for any one place! Sheesh!
     
  6. mushnz

    mushnz Loaded Pockets

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    Thanks for the advice Dizos - really useful.
    I knew you had lots of poisonous critters, but didn't realise how many...
    (and that's not even considering the sharks, jelly-fish, crocodiles, scorpions, etc)

    I am looking forward to the trip - I hear its beautiful up there...

    Thanks again
     
  7. xjsnake

    xjsnake Loaded Pockets

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    Those are exactly the reason I WANT to go there... hahaha
     
  8. echo63

    echo63 Loaded Pockets

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    If you want a laugh, have spook on YouTube for "Come To Australia" by the scared weird little guys.

    Dizos is right with the knife situation, although it varies a little by state.

    As for snakes and stuff, providing you are aware that there are snakes and spiders out there, wear good solid boots and trousers, and don't go sticking your hands in holes in trees or the ground, you should be fine, just common sense stuff really
     
  9. CatherineM
    • In Omnia Paratus

    CatherineM Loaded Pockets

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    Let's not forget the sea snakes and blue ring octopus.