In a shocking move, Australia has begun culling kangaroos from Monday, May 16, with a view to reduce their rapidly increasing population. The country plans to kill more than 1,900 kangaroos to avoid a potential devastating effect on the local ecology.
While culling of kangaroos will be undertaken only in the Australian Capital Territory (ATC), the authorities will close the 10 reserves across the territory that will remain closed every evening till they achieve the target, Catch News reported. Thus far, the country has culled over 4,000 kangaroos in the past 2 years, as a part of its annual initiate to protect the environment.
According Director of Parks and Conservation of the ACT government, Daniel Iglesias, it had become essential to restrain the eastern gray kangaroos' population in the ACT. He said that over-population of these kangaroos can cause destruction to the local environment, by de-vegetating and the completely degrading specific areas if they do not check their numbers.
While Iglesias emphasized that culling kangaroos is not eradicating them but maintaining sustainable numbers of eastern gray kangaroos, currently scientists are experimenting the efficacy of fertility drugs as an alternative method to check kangaroo populations. It is expected that the cull will end by Aug. 1.
Meanwhile, the culling of kangaroos has led to strong protests from animal activists, Tech Times reported. Last month, a Canberra-based animal activist Chris Klootwijk was found guilty of creating problems during culling in July last year.
Klootwijk, who was present at the site of culling, reportedly started blowing a whistle to caution the shooters in his location. Later, the animal activist claimed that the authorities were not conducting the operation legally. According to cull arrangements, a shooter ought to ensure that a kangaroo is dead prior to killing other animals.
Responding to such protests, Iglesias has called all protesters to stage their protests in a peaceful way and not put others in trouble.
It is worth mentioning here that this is not the first time that the Australian government has resorted to culling to control over population of animals. The government proposed to kill about 2 million feral cats in July 2015, as these animals have been threatening the destruction of plants and other animal species.