Address for correspondence: AWMS, c/o Desley Whisson, School of Life and Environmental Sciences, Faculty of Science & Technology Campus, Deakin University, 221 Burwood Hwy, Burwood, VIC 3125, AUSTRALIA
The Australasian Wildlife Management Society strongly urges the Federal government to act swiftly on the advice of wildlife experts to use sedation followed by euthanasia to reduce the high density of grey kangaroos on the Belconnen Naval site.
Spokesperson for the society, vice president Terry Korn said it was critical that the community understood the need for the reduction in kangaroo density and that the process recommended is the most humane and practical under the circumstances.
The high density of kangaroos is seriously threatening the ecosystem of the naval site by overgrazing vegetation and impacting on other plant dependent native species.
A humane reduction program will produce a win-win situation said Mr Korn. It will ensure the long term survival of the kangaroo population as well as the other plant dependent species now under serious threat due to the overgrazing by the kangaroos.
Mr Korn said that the kangaroos remaining after the initial reduction through sedation and euthanasia would then be involved in a scientifically controlled fertility program which would assist in keeping their numbers at ecologically sustainable levels.
The recommendations have been formulated by eminent wildlife experts who are familiar with the complex nature of managing iconic native species in high profile localities said Mr Korn. Translocation was considered as an option but was ruled out on not only on humane grounds but also because it was considered it would simply shift the problem elsewhere. While shooting was supported as the preferred humane option it was not possible because of human safety reasons, according to the Federal police.
It is critical that the present kangaroo population be reduced to the recommended levels before winter seriously reduces feed supply and the population begins to starve said Mr Korn. This means the Federal government has to act swiftly!
Contact: Terry Korn, vice president, Australasian Wildlife Management Society 02 68 847298, firstname.lastname@example.org