Australia’s iconic kangaroos deserve our protection


Australia’s iconic kangaroos deserve our protection

25 May 2020
Ondine Sherman, president of our Australian member organisation Voiceless, shares an opinion piece about the country's symbol: the kangaroos. Besides detrimental consequences of the bush fires just a couple of months ago, these animals have been the victims of the world’s largest commercial slaughter of terrestrial wildlife.

Although a response to Australia's environmental catastrophe has been overwhelmingly positive, with donations pouring from citizens and celebrities and public speeches being delivered to protect country's flora and fauna, the reality for kangaroos has remained cruel even after the bush fires were extinguished. 

The exact same kangaroos that veterinarians and wildlife carers were valiantly saving and rehabilitating are today being hunted down.

Government statistics show that in recent years an annual 1.6 million adult kangaroos are killed, meaning that 100,000-200,000 joeys are also collateral ‘waste’ and of no value to the industry. It is also estimated that up to 40 percent of adult kangaroos are mis-shot and suffer slow painful deaths. 

Besides meat (both for human consumption and more often as pet food), kangaroo products are hidden in sports related items like shoes, balls and soccer cleats for which kangaroo skins are used in production. 

This is why Ondine call for the kangaroo meat and skins to be prohibited in the EU and the US.