Victorian Kangaroo Alliance Inc. brings together communities, wildlife experts (organisations, vets, rescuers, carers and advocates), Traditional Owners, wildlife-friendly politicians and councillors, media, animal welfare organisations and direct-action animal defenders to protect Victoria’s Kangaroos. We have a core team which supports regional groups with their own community leaders.
Victorian Kangaroo Alliance emerged out of two long and difficult kangaroo campaigns in Melbourne’s outer east. We initially created Save the Kinley Kangas in mid-2020 to prevent the shooting of a small mob trapped in the Kinley Development in Lilydale under an 'Authority to Control Wildlife Permit'. As the Kinley campaign was unfolding, we were approached with the urgent news that 250 kangaroos were to be killed under the commercial 'Kangaroo Harvest Program' at the Heritage Golf and Country Club in Chirnside Park. Both campaigns proved arduous and fraught with issues, but we are so proud of the community effort that saved so many lives of these beloved local kangaroos.
We then joined forces with kangaroo advocates in regional Victoria to fight the proposed Inglewood kangaroo processing facility that would increase demand for bodies from 1000-5000 per week. This campaign is ongoing.
As our work had formed an amazing network of allies across Victoria (and beyond!) we decided to rebrand as Victorian Kangaroo Alliance in October 2021 to argue the broader issues facing Victoria's kangaroos.
Victorian kangaroos are in crisis. Average quotas have tripled, communities are outraged and shooters are desperately soliciting for dwindling kangaroos.
With the onset of the Kangaroo Pet Food Trial in 2014, then Agriculture Minister Peter Walsh told Victorians commercialising kangaroo shooting ‘‘will not mean any increase in the wildlife control permits at all, it is just utilising the waste that is there from the current controls”. However, average quotas have since more than tripled. It was flagged in the Kangaroo Pet Food Trial Evaluation Report (2018) that commercialisation risks sustainability and breeds corruption, yet this warning was brazenly ignored by Victorian Labor. Victorian Labor launched the Kangaroo Harvesting Program, removed the need for landholder permits and opened nearly the whole state to ‘harvesting’.
Commercial quotas continue to increase and the industry is trying to expand. Consequently, we are facing a kangaroo crisis. This unsustainable industry is sweeping across Victoria decimating kangaroo populations in its wake. Wildlife volunteers are called to horrifically wounded kangaroos, community members are expressing concern to Victorian Kangaroo Alliance about disappearing kangaroos, and profiteering shooters are increasingly desperate to find kangaroos.
Not only are there reports of shooters leafleting and door-knocking, they are soliciting widely across community Facebook groups in a bid to find scarce kangaroos. Hundreds of posts were found across more than 100 Facebook groups in the past 18 months. There are likely many more in private groups.
Recently, independent biostatistician Claire Galea has released a damning critique of the flawed kangaroo counting processes that are putting Victorian kangaroos at grave risk.
We are in the middle of a sixth mass extinction and biodiversity crisis with wildlife making up only four percent of the world’s mammals. Now is the time for Labor to start conserving our unique and iconic kangaroos and treating them with the respect they deserve.