There are two criteria which should be applied to the harvest of an animal species: 1. Are the numbers taken sustainable, and 2. Is the method of killing humane?
At least that’s what I said on ABC Radio National last Friday morning when Steve Cannane asked me why I thought it was hypocritical for Australians to rally against whaling by the Japanese while ignoring the slaughter of dugongs by indigenous Australians.
In reply Steve interviewed Joe Morrison, Executive Officer of the North Australian Indigenous Land and Sea Management Alliance, this morning. Mr Morrison essentially side-stepped the issue of whether dugongs were killed humanely, but he did dispute my claim that 1,000 dugongs are killed in northern Australia each year.
Mr Morrison suggested this number only applied to the Torres Straits. So how many dugongs are killed each year in Northern Australia?
You can listen to both interviews by podcast. The interviews were part of the Breakfast Program and so the podcasts include other interviews and news reports during that segment of the program.
1. Anti-whaling activists released
…The men are about to be handed over to the Sea Shepherd ship, the Steve Irwin. Meanwhile, an Australian public policy group is critical of the strong tactics used by conservation groups like the Sea Shepherds and Greenpeace, and the position of the Australian government on the whales issue.
Paul Watson, Captain of the Steve Irwin
Dr. Jennifer Marohasy, Senior fellow at the Institute of Public Affairs
2. Whales and dugongs
Last week Breakfast heard from Dr Jennifer Marohasy from the Melbourne-based Institute of Public Affairs who described the Australian Government’s anti-whaling position as hypocritical. Dr Marohasy said the Federal Government and conservation groups like Greenpeace and the Sea Shepherd are jumping up and down about the slaughter of whales by the Japanese, yet ignoring the killing of more endangered species like dugongs and turtles by Indigenous people in Northern Australia.
Joe Morrison, Executive Officer of the North Australian Indigenous Land and Sea Management Alliance (NAILSMA)