Concerns have been raised about the safety of wildlife, particularly kangaroos, in the Mernda area, after a kangaroo was found shot and tied to a chair.
The kangaroo was found on Plenty Road by a passerby.
It was wearing a leopard-print shawl and cap, with a bottle of ouzo in its arms.
Its death is being investigated by the Department of Land, Water and Planning (DELWP) and has prompted the People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) group to offer a $5000 reward for information leading to the identification and conviction of the person or people responsible.
Department senior investigator Mike Sverns said the kangaroo had been shot at least three times before being set up in the chair.
“We are certain that someone would have seen something, given the public area and traffic flow of this main road,” he said.
Under the Wildlife Act, penalties for killing, destroying and being in control of unlawfully taken protected wildlife range from $7500 to $36,500 and/or six to 24 months’ jail.
Wildlife Victoria chief executive Karen Masson said the organisation and community were keeping an eye on kangaroos in the area.
“Thankfully, these sort of situations are few and far between, but it is extremely disturbing,” she said.
Ms Masson said people had come forward with information since the DELWP issued a public appeal last week.
Anyone with information should contact Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000.