Kangaroo population control must not be handed to amateurs
Monday 7 September 2015
A proposal from the Shooters and Fishers Party for an open season on kangaroos should be stopped in its tracks.
"Amateur hunters are in no position to deal strategically with kangaroo population problems," Victorian National Parks Association spokesperson Phil Ingamells said today.
"Kangaroo numbers do sometimes get out of control, but this usually happens at a very local level, and the Wildlife Act already provides ways for farmers to deal with out-of-control native animals.
"A cull can be called if a population is having, or likely to have, serious impacts on a farm, or when kangaroos face starvation in a dry season. But these issues must be supervised, managed strategically, and dealt with humanely by expert shooters who can minimise any suffering of animals," Mr Ingamells said.
"Any proposition where recreational shooters are given open season to hunt kangaroos would be highly unlikely to achieve sensible control of numbers, and also leave normal kangaroo populations open to exploitation.
"Most problem populations of kangaroos are in fragmented land near farms and townships, and so amateur shooting could pose a serious threat to public safety.
"It would also, most likely, leave us with wounded and panicked kangaroos, injured by inexpert shooters. Pest management, whether for native or introduced pests, must be dealt with strategically."