Kangaroo Culling: Why it Divides Australia
Nothing else screams Australia more than the infamous kangaroo. This marsupial is especially known for having strong hind legs which it uses for locomotion through hopping rather than walking. It is an animal that is native only to the Land Down Under, making it a great mascot to represent our country.
Yet being as iconic as it is, it has been a constant subject of culling due to its allegedly rising population. It is said that it is the only feasible way as of now to control its growing numbers. These increased numbers are responsible for various environmental problems that Australia has been dealing with for quite a while. But while it sounds like a sensible action, this has caught Australia in a great divide.
Here’s a few reasons why some feel culling is the answer.
Animal Collisions in South East
According to an article posted by The Advertiser last July 2017, motorist and animal collisions have increased by a whopping 40 percent in the past three years. This caused a country mayor to plead for a kangaroo cull, as the said animals have been mostly involved in these accidents.
If the population continues to go unchecked, it may cause more incidents on the road, which includes fatalities due to swerving to avoid the animal. Some have even aired their thoughts that it can be detrimental to traffic, especially when emergency vehicles need to reach their destinations as quickly as possible.
Overgrazing by the Kangaroos
The population of these marsupials have been linked to a potential environmental imbalance, prompting people to believe culling is a necessary action. True to this analysis, this year has proved to be another record in terms of eliminating the kangaroos. There are overgrazing problems with introduced species such as wild pigs and deer.
The Canberra Times reported that almost 2600 kangaroos were killed to prevent overgrazing. An extremely high number of these animals would mean more vegetation is consumed, leaving other species with little to no food or shelter.
Opposition to Culling
There are those, however, who have voiced out their strong opposition to culling kangaroos. Some of their reasons include:
- Brink of population collapse, specifically the red kangaroo
- Aboriginal culture which has a deep spiritual connection with these animals
- The use of kangaroos as scapegoat to overgrazing
- Benefit of these marsupials to ecotourism
Given these points to ponder, it is no wonder why the topic has caused a huge debate. So is culling the solution or not?