“If they are not culled, there will be many more than 400 facing death from starvation,” he told reporters during a trip to Japan.
Dr Graeme Coulson, a senior lecturer in the Department of Zoology at the University of Melbourne and an expert in the ecology and management of kangaroo populations. October 2007 – “From an animal welfare point of view, the kangaroos are now so prolific at the site that it will soon get to the point where the kangaroos themselves will be under threat from over-population.”
Herbivores in grassland surrounded by a fence or unsuitable habitat, without predators, can usually be counted upon to increase in number until the food supply is used up and animals begin to starve. There are many examples in Australia where this has happened with kangaroos and, if nothing is done, it will surely end up with the habitat being destroyed by overgrazing and the kangaroos dying of starvation. Because this pattern is well understood, and able to be predicted, it should be possible to anticipate and deal with problems of overpopulation before they arise.”
Dr Greg Baxter is a Senior lecturer in Natural and Rural Systems Management at the University of Queensland. – “There are not any animal welfare issues with a cull but there are issues if we leave them, it is a long lingering death by starvation and will take weeks for them to die. This seems like a very painful and unpleasant way to die and they have the capacity to severely degrade the environment as they are wild animals trying to eke out a living.”
“If nature is left to take its course there will be severe effects on the endangered grassland and many kangaroos will suffer a slow death by starvation,” the Australian Capital Territory government said in a report.
“Kangaroo Culling on Defence lands – Fact Sheet” – “Eastern grey kangaroos are the most numerous species of kangaroo or wallaby. There are no conservation concerns either nationally or in the ACT. In fact there has been a population explosion of eastern grey kangaroos in the last half century in the ACT. The Territory contains sites with the highest kangaroo densities ever measured (more than 450 kangaroos per square kilometre).
A firm of consultant ecologists has advised the Department of Defence that a sustainable population is about one kangaroo per hectare. At the Belconnen Naval Transmitter Station site the population is now about 4.4 animals per hectare. At the Majura Training Area the effective density in the grassland and woodland areas is more than 2 animals per hectare.
If nature is left to take its course there will be severe effects on the endangered grassland and many kangaroos will suffer a slow death by starvation.
The proposal by Defence is to shoot about 400 kangaroos at Belconnen and 2800 kangaroos at Majura. Defence has applied for culling licences, and has consulted sources of expertise about the Defence proposals.”