Too many camels in Australia - Macleans.ca
 

Too many camels in Australia

The Northern Territory is planning a massive cull


 

Thirsty camels are causing chaos in Docker River, Australia. Years of drought are driving the wild animals into town, where they are knocking over fire hydrants and busting into homes looking for water. Local authorities say the unfortunate solution is a massive cull of the animals.

The 350 residents of the remote Northern Territory community have been living in fear since up to 6,000 feral camels starting moving in about two months ago. “They more or less come into houses and go right through,” one local told Australian public radio. To end the siege, the region’s Central Land Council has spent $47,000 organizing an aerial cull: last week, helicopters began herding the animals outside of town, and marksmen are aiming to kill some 3,000 from the air.

The cull, seen as a last resort by the local government and the mainly indigenous residents of Docker River, has drawn criticism from around the world. Authorities have received scores of letters calling the plan inhumane and demanding it be called off; one from Tokyo asked, “Why can’t the children lead the camels out of the community?” “That’s a bit on the bizarre side,” says Des Rogers, an executive on the local council, “but it reinforces the fact that people don’t really understand the circumstances.”

Locally, criticism has come from camel-meat processors. Authorities have turned down their requests to move the animals to their facilities or to make use of mobile abattoirs, saying there wasn’t time to organize such a coordinated program. There’s also concern that as the carcasses degrade in the desert, they will become a food source for scavengers such as foxes and wild dogs, possibly leading to a population explosion.

The cull will only temporarily relieve Docker River’s camel problem: over a million of the animals, introduced to Australia in the 1840s for use as pack animals, are thought to be roaming the outback. With their ability to survive for long periods without water, and few predators in the vicinity, populations continue to soar across central Australia. In July, the country’s federal government set aside $18 million to control the camels.


 
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Too many camels in Australia

  1. Camels are not native to Australia. They have become a nuisance, destroying the landscape. Well Mal, if you are so freaken concerned about all this, adapt a bunch of them. However,don't forget the saying about a camel's snout under the tent flap. Funny I don't see Greenpiece(fraud) protesting about this. I guess camels arn't as cute and cuddy as seal pups and the suckers don't send in money to save ugly animals. Come to think of it Mal, why don't ya adopt and bunch of seals while your at it. A word of warning though, adult seals are about as cuddy as camels. Both will bite your hand off, if given the chance. That's what nearly happened to Sir Paul's kookie ex-wife when they went blundering on to the ice pack here a few years ago. I'll bet he now wishes the seal had pulled her right under, but I digress. Anyway good luck with the petting zoo and happy new year.

  2. Your science on this issue is suspect and your view is extreme poppycock, camel jockey.

  3. Mal fabian seems to have his science messed up. Diprotodons went extinct 40 000 years ago and camels were introduce into Australia 170 years ago. Kill all the camels and it won't hurt Australia one iota.

    By the way Mal, playing the racist card and the use of all those words with upper case emphasis really makes you look like the lunatic I believe you to be.

  4. Mal, You're a good guy. I was there the week prior or so, no problem, hardly any camels at all. None near the settlement anyway, and i saw maybe 2 dozen all up.The slaughter is senseless, just disgraceful. I wonder why they didn't go toward ayres rock resort and get in the pools, it's only 190km away. The Docker River people definitely didn't deserve this, they are lovely people. However, the ayres rock resort, with so many pools and hardly a hint of Indegenous Culture, except for some souvenir shops, got none. Ayres Rock resort is poorly maintained and so expensive, staff have poor moral and it costs around $400 a night for a room. Give it to the Indegenous people to run, overhaul and to benefit from, it was horrible. Hopefully the government pays some attention to improving conditions in the settlement now, that would be a better way to spend all that money. And why not let the mobile abboitoir industry come in, and provide jobs for the Indegenous, whilst trinmming the numbers and provide cheap meat for them, not $9 kangaroo tails. And killing that way, would be not so cruel and hopefully the camels would die immediately, without sufferring. Has this ever happened before, anywhwere? The camels look so good, they were awesome. And they looked very healthy. The Docker River people were awesome to.

    Take Care Mal !! I support you 100%!!