WILDLIFE groups have welcomed a proposal to remove kangaroos on the Mornington Peninsula from the commercial kangaroo harvest scheme.
If adopted, the changes will come into effect in 2025 and last until 2028.
However, property owners will still be able to apply for permit to “control wildlife”.
Public comments can be made about the Victorian Kangaroo Harvest Management Plan 2024-2028 until Monday 4 December.
The Save Kangaroos on the Mornington Peninsula (SKOMP) group hailed the peninsula kangaroo’s removal from the plan as “great news”.
Kangaroos are the peninsula currently included in the Gippsland harvesting zone, which wildlife advocates say distorts the actual number of kangaroos in the area.
SKOMP spokesperson Craig Thomson said the group wanted the change to be adopted from 2024 and for an end to lethal measures provided in the Authority to Control Wildlife permit system.
Thomson said SKOMP was grateful for the support of the community over the past four years in opposing the harvesting of kangaroos and for taking “a strong position” in fighting for the removal of peninsula kangaroos from the scheme.
“There is no doubt to us at SKOMP that the current proposed exclusion of the peninsula from the Gippsland harvest zone wouldn’t have happened without your support, so again thank you,” he said.
The Victorian Commercial Kangaroo Harvest Program is the world’s largest legal commercial slaughter of wildlife.
It permits eastern grey and western grey kangaroos to be killed on private land and on specified areas of public land.
The new “exclusion zone” where kangaroos cannot be commercially harvested has been extended to include central Melbourne, outer suburbs and urban growth corridors, the Mornington Peninsula, the Dandenongs, and the western grasslands.
The plan is administered by the Department of Energy, Environment and Climate Action, which states that its aim is to ensure that commercial kangaroo harvesting in ecologically sustainable and conducted “according to animal welfare standards”.
To view the plan, go to dcceew.gov.au