It’s time to stand up for kangaroos – our most persecuted species.
A new documentary is bringing much needed scrutiny to Australia’s commercial kangaroo industry. Kangaroo: A Love Hate Story (trailer below) depicts the harsh brutality of the world’s largest commercial slaughter of terrestrial wildlife.
Over the last decade more than 21 million adult kangaroos were killed for commercial purposes, with 1.34 million kangaroos commercially killed in 2016. The red, eastern grey, western grey and common wallaroo are the species targeted.
Government and industry like to call it ‘harvesting’.
Here are some of the cold hard facts about the kangaroo industry. If these facts upset you, you can take action below to ask Australia’s supermarkets to clear their shelves of kangaroo products.
- Shooting occurs away from scrutiny in darkness in remote locations. There is no effective monitoring of animal welfare.
- Shooters are unable to accurately shoot kangaroos in the brain every time and an unknown number of kangaroos are miss-shot causing horrific injuries.
- Pouch young and at-foot joeys are casualties when their mothers are shot.
- The National Code of Practice requires at-foot joeys to be shot, and to decapitate or ‘crush the skull and destroy the brain’ of pouch young. This will often be done by swinging the pouch joey against a vehicle.
- Many dependent at-foot joeys are left in the field to suffer exposure, starvation or predation.
- Around 8 million dependent joeys are estimated to have died due to commercial shooting in the period 2000-20091.
- Attempts are made to target males but mistakes are inevitable and targeting adult males has its own consequences for population health.
- Some kangaroo meat products are readily available in supermarkets in Australia, with much going into the Australian pet food market and the rest is exported to other countries as leather or meat.
- Kangaroos are butchered in the wild without supervision. They are transported on unrefrigerated open trucks exposed to dust and flies and frequent high temperatures leading to unavoidable contamination.
- In 2014 Russia banned kangaroo meat imports for a third time due to pathogenic microbial contamination.
Humane Society International has signed an open letter with other organisations with our concerns on the welfare implications of kangaroo slaughter in Australia.
What can you do?
1. Most importantly, please provide feedback to Woolworths and Coles directly, encouraging them not to stock kangaroo meat products (for humans or pets) via their online forms:
2. Sign our pledge to not buy kangaroo meat for yourself or your pet – we’ll let Woolworths and Coles know how many people have pledged to go kangaroo meat-free.
1 Ben Ami et al. 2014. The welfare ethics of the commercial killing of free-ranging kangaroos: an evaluation of the benefits and costs of the industry. Animal Welfare 2014, 23: 1-10