On Monday 11 April 2016, a round-table discussion was held at Rahamim about Kangaroos living on Mount Panorama (Wahluu).
The information presented came from 3 researchers (from University of Western Sydney, Sydney University of Technology and Charles Sturt University), WIRES, a senior lecturer in journalism at CSU, the Green Army, as well as national award winning conservationists Helen Bergen and Ray Mjadwesch. The 32 other attendees represented at the table included residents of the Mount, CSU Green, BCCAN, Skillset, Rahamim and several other residents.
Here is a summary of some of the most compelling facts:
- Common perceptions that kangaroos are in ‘plague’ proportions are false. It is impossible for this scenario to occur with Eastern Grey kangaroos because of high infant mortality rates (73%) and short fertility periods of Eastern Greys.
- Eastern Grey kangaroos need native woodland to thrive. Mt Panorama (Wahluu) is one of very few woodlands available to kangaroos in our region.
- Understanding what causes kangaroos to stray on to the race track is essential. Indiscriminate culling of adult kangaroos can increase the risks, causing erratic behaviour in their young, straying from safe areas.
- Culling to the point of extinction of a species from a particular area is illegal.
- Wild kangaroos of Bathurst are famous worldwide, make for a compelling story-line for national and international journalism and hold invaluable potential for tourism.
- Most local residents of the Mount live in harmonious relationship with the kangaroos and want them to stay.
At the round-table, the following simple actions were recommended:
- Improved fencing around the race track and removal of hazardous redundant fencing around the mount
- Improved safe zones for kangaroos
- Stop indiscriminate culling
- Council to work closely with local experts and consult scientific findings prior to making decisions about wildlife.
For further information, visit Bathurst Kangaroo Project.