Nillumbik Shire Council has called for an early start to the Shire’s removal from the Victorian Kangaroo Harvesting Program.
At last night’s Council meeting, Councillors called for the change to be brought forward to the start of the new year rather than waiting until the previously agreed date of January 2025.
The Councillors also outlined plans to advocate for improvements to the program across the rest of Victoria.
The State Government’s proposed Victorian Kangaroo Harvest Management Plan 2024-2028, which was released last week, would see Nillumbik and nine other Melbourne metropolitan councils removed from the kangaroo culling program.
It follows a local community campaign which saw a petition of about 14,000 signatures submitted to Council in September calling for an end to the commercial killing of kangaroos in Nillumbik.
Mayor, Ben Ramcharan said Nillumbik’s removal from the program was a great outcome for the Shire.
“I’d like to congratulate members of the community who have worked so hard for this,” Cr Ramcharan said.
“It’s a huge community push, a huge community effort and everyone who was involved should be incredibly proud.
“There may be some valid argument about why kangaroo numbers need to be controlled, but this method is cruel.”
The Victorian Kangaroo Harvest Management Plan allows the commercial harvesting of kangaroos on private land in certain areas and within specified guidelines.
Council has recommended a number of improvements to help make the program more accountable including:
- More transparent reporting from harvesters about the damage by kangaroos;
- Collection of publically available data about the number of kangaroos culled by local government area;
- Exploring how hunters could be required or encouraged not to overly target the largest kangaroos;
- A requirement for hunters to undertake regular shooting competency tests;
- State Government investment into environmental monitoring to understand where kangaroo control to protect biodiversity is needed.
The proposed Victorian Kangaroo Harvest Management Plan 2024-2028 is open for feedback until Monday 11 December 2023.