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

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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.

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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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IUCN World Conservation Congress

George Wilson was iucnone of over ten thousand participants including many Australians who attended the WCC in Hawaii in September. The overall theme was ‘Planet at the Crossroads’ building on the Paris Agreement on climate change, the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), the ‘Promise of Sydney’, Aichi Biodiversity Targets, the Earth Charter, and The Honolulu Challenge on Invasive Alien Species. During the 10 days of both the discussion

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Fairfax media article – kangaroo welfare depends on landholders being able to benefit

Kangaroos have long competed with pastoral production systems on the rangelands. They move onto spelled paddocks and it is therefore essential to manage them to control total grazing pressure. By cooperating across property boundaries, landholders should be able to undertake more sustainable land management, convert a liability into an asset by earning income from kangaroo products, and carbon and biodiversity credits. Doing so would follow overseas precedents of devolved responsibility and proprietorship of wildlife. It would improve welfare outcomes. See

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European Wildlife Bank

Greg AndrewsGeorge Wilson met with Threatened Species Commissioner Greg Andrews on 16th of December. They discussed Georges project and draft paper on greater private sector involvement in the conservation of threatened species. Greg was interested in overseas practice in South Africa and Europe which enables private investment, proprietorship and regulated trade to operate as market-based incentives to conserve wildlife. See European

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