National Geographic – drafting story on kangaroos

A National Geographic journalist from Washington who is writing a story on kangaroos was flown by George Wilson on a trip through outback New South Wales and Queensland. They visited properties near White Cliffs, Quilpie and Coonamble and a professional kangaroo shooter. They heard of concerns of landholders who are having difficulties adjusting their total grazing pressure to deteriorating seasonal conditions and pasture shortages. Reduced demand for kangaroo products from the commercial harvesting industry is leading to alternative kangaroo control

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Food unwrapped – UK Channel 4 – kangaroo meat

On UK Channel 4 program ‘Food Unwrapped’, George Wilson presented perspectives on kangaroo meat and its attributes, plus the complexities of kangaroo management. The program featured kangaroos on the Federal Golf Course, interviews with local graziers and a scene at Bondi Beach of a barbeque featuring kangaroo meat.  Channel 4 is a publicly-owned and commercially-funded UK Public Service Broadcaster, with a statutory remit to deliver high-quality, innovative, alternative content that challenges the status quo. The video is at the link.

European Wildlife Bank

The European Wildlife Bank (EWB) is a commercial and legal framework that could be a model for enabling finance and investment in conservation of threatened species. George Wilson met EWB in Amsterdam recently and learnt more about EWB. It is supported by the European Commission and other partners, especially the Dutch Postcode Lottery. It facilitates reintroduction of original native herbivores to rewilding areas. It keeps control over its reintroduction herds by making contracts with third parties, mostly local land managers/land

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Maranoa Kangaroo Cooperative – financial support

Financial support for the Maranoa Kangaroo Growers and Harvesters Cooperative, one of George Wilson’s projects, has been announced by the Minister. Funding from the Farming Together program will enable regional cooperative kangaroo management to enhance the sustainability of grazing systems. It will enable employment of staff, identification of procedures for value-adding product, and verification of the contribution the project makes to biodiversity and carbon improvement. By improving the accuracy of description, quality and value of kangaroo products in central Qld,

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Vulnerable animals and private land

On 28 May 2017, ABC Radio National broadcast a segment by George Wilson on its Occam’s Razor segment.  The program presents ideas that adhere to the notion  that if there are several possible solutions to a problem, the simplest alternative is probably the truth. George’s outlined a way to address the rate at which vulnerable animals are disappearing from the landscape. His talk proposed trials in which market forces could have a role to play in conservation. If private landholders could take up

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Why do we do scientific research ? What’s working and what needs work?

ANU Vice Chancellor, Professor Brian Schmidt, a Nobel Prize winning astronomer and physicist, addresses a number of key issues confronting Australian scientists and researchers in an excellent broadcast on ABC Radio National. To what extent should science be directed and the outcomes tailored to meet the commercial needs of industry and business or are there better returns to be made from basic science where sometimes the greatest advances have been serendipitous? What should science be doing to better inform the

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Food carbon footprint league table

Kangaroo does best of the red meats. On average, 244g of kangaroo meat is produced for every 1kg of greenhouse gas emissions, far more than the lowly 44 g of beef meat produced for every kg of pollution by cattle. The comparison comes from a RMIT dataset prepared for consumers and catering organisations to estimate the impact of their ingredients and menus. The authors have produced a list that illustrates how much – or how little – it takes for

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Red Kangaroo die off

Hundreds of red kangaroos have been found dead in far western NSW Qld and SA. Despite good feed and plenty of water around, something, as yet undetected, is killing kangaroos and making the survivors very weak. The epidemic started late in September and is continuing in pockets. Retired Veterinary Officer Greg Curran in Broken Hill said “It was predictable. Similar outbreaks occurred in the 1998 and in 2010 after floods and good seasons.” He was receiving reports from people seeing

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Chinese forestry experts learn of Australian wildlife management

George Wilson provided lectures to a delegation of 18 forestry managers visiting Australia from the State Forestry Administration of PR China. Lectures covered an overview of wildlife protection legislative and operational activities, roles of Commonwealth and State law, kangaroo management including commercial use, threatened species management, Indigenous wildlife land management – needs and opportunities including carbon farming, tourism and bush tucker. “

Can private ownership of wildlife remedy shortfalls in government funding for conservation?

We ask the question in a paper in Conservation Letters and propose trials to test it. Landholders, community groups, and investors would have a form of wildlife ownership by leasing threatened species on land outside protected areas. They would be able to acquire animals from locally overabundant populations, breed them, innovate and assist further colonization/range expansion while making a profit from the increase. They may choose to reinvest any profits in further conservation. The role of government would be to regulate, as is

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