Community facilities | February 08, 2016

Kangaroo Pet Food Trial Extended For Two Years

Nationals Member for Lowan Emma Kealy says local calls to extend the Kangaroo Pet Food trial have been heard following an announcement to extend the trial for a further two years.

“Although the trial has been extended, it should be made permanent. It is very disappointing that the Government have not yet extended the trail into the Glenelg and West Wimmera Shire Council areas,” Ms Kealy said.

“I have already met with both the Glenelg and West Wimmera Shire Councils, and it is clear they both want and need access to the kangaroo pet food trial.

“The current trial was to finish at the end of March and Labor should have announced the continuation of the program months ago to provide certainty to local pet food processors.

“The number of permits issued to control the dramatic increase in the kangaroo population must be the first consideration of an independent advisory group that will be established to provide advice to government on kangaroo management.

“In areas of South West Victoria, the kangaroo population has significantly increased to a level which is causing severe damage to our native flora and fauna. This is putting a major strain on some species of plants and animals native to our local area, and therefore must be managed in a responsible manner,” she said.

Prior to the trail, the only licence that landholders could access to manage kangaroo populations resulted in the carcass of the culled kangaroo being buried or left to rot.

“The kangaroo for pet food trial creates a much stronger framework for the management of kangaroo numbers in western Victoria, with the improved monitoring of the number of kangaroos culled in accordance with the licence issued,” Ms Kealy said.

“Numbers area strictly monitored in accordance to the licence issued. This is achieved through a rigid tagging process, which is regulated and audited by the Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning personnel.

“Further, all shooters employed to cull kangaroos have been fully trained and accredited to ensure the animals are culled in a humane manner with least pain and suffering.

“Having seen firsthand the damage that plague numbers of kangaroos are having on the local ecosystem and habitat of other native flora and fauna, I believe that we need an effective and humane system to minimise this damage,” she said.

Emma Kealy, Member for Lowan and Peter Walsh, Leader of The Nationals visited a processing plant in Hamilton last month to see first-hand the improved systems and flow on benefits of the processing of kangaroos for pet food.

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