CROCODILE CULL SUPPORT BY FEDERAL ENVIRONMENT MINISTER IS IRRESPONSIBLE, SAYS HSI
20 April 2017
Humane Society International (HSI) is dismayed at the archaic comments made by Federal Environment Minister Josh Frydenberg that he would support a cull of crocodiles in northern Queensland, and believes any order to kill the species protected under state and federal law would be a grossly irresponsible and ineffective measure that does nothing to increase public safety.
“It’s quite absurd that we have the suggestion to return to an outdated and draconian strategy that would target a species listed as vulnerable under Queensland’s Nature Conservation Act, and it’s even more shocking that our Federal Environment Minister is publically announcing his support for it given the negative consequences a cull would have on the species and its environment,” says Nicola Beynon, HSI Head of Campaigns.
The Federal Minister does not have the power to approve a cull in Queensland because it is a matter entirely for state government law. HSI commends the Queensland Environment Minister for his view that a cull would give the public a false sense of safety, and supports the sensible approach to crocodile population monitoring as the best way forward.
Ms Nicola Beynon added, “A cull will do nothing to increase public safety, but it will damage ecosystems and Australia’s international conservation reputation. We encourage the Federal Environment Minister to retract his comments and look at meaningful public safety measures that reduce the possibility of human-wildlife conflict in northern Queensland.”
Debate in recent weeks has centred on the impact to tourism of crocodile culling in Queensland, after the announcement by the Katter’s Australia Party that it will be introducing legislation for crocodile cull initiatives before May in an attempt to boost tourism in the state.
“A cull could actually negatively and seriously impact tourist experiences in Australia, because we see animal welfare concerns growing globally and understand that visitors come to our country to see native wildlife alive, not dead. Australia should not fall behind and present itself in such a backward way in order to encourage tourism to our shores,” says Ms Beynon.
The salt water crocodile is listed as Marine and Migratory under the EPBC Act and is listed on Appendix II of the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Flora and Fauna (CITES) for Australia.