A ranger was given the 24-hour round trip to remove the sign amid concerns it might prompt travellers to go searching further for the proposed location. The closest McDonald’s restaurant is 600km away.

Environment Minister Ian Hunter said the government could still appreciate the joke. “We do see the funny side of the McDonald’s sign in the middle of nowhere,” he said.

“But we must remind people that our national parks are here for everyone to enjoy and to appreciate their unspoilt values.”

The sign has since been repositioned at the request of the operator who called it an example of quirky outback humour.