Murray Bridge bunyip, Bertha, leaves Sturt Reserve for repairs

Murray Bridge’s tacky but beloved bunyip, Bertha, has departed her habitat at Sturt Reserve to go and get some repairs.

Layers of sludge and gunk enveloped her late last year, the result of an oil leak from a hydraulic ram.

Her steel frame rusted, one of her corner wheels became jammed, and her wire-mesh body was twisted out of shape.

The Murray Bridge council shut her down on October 23, and voted to spend $100,000 fixing her up.

Council CEO Michael Sedgman said she would be returned in late February.

“We’ve got some challenges in terms of what we need to do: structural, hydraulic, electrical, pretty much the whole shebang,” he said.

“We’ll be progressing those works over the coming six weeks.”

When she returns to operation, she will be free for all to summon from the waters of her cave – her coin-operated mechanism will be replaced with a button.

However, she will only operate during daylight hours.

The bunyip was originally named Bert when she was built in 1972, but changed her name to Bertha when she gave birth to a horrifying baby in 1982.

The baby bunyip left its home in 2000.

Note: An earlier version of this story suggested the bunyip was being returned after being fixed; The Standard later received clarification that she was actually being taken away.

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