Photo courtesy Lyn Watson
"The Dingo in trouble?"... I hear people ask "but isn't that a protected native species?"
People are always surprised when they find out that our dingo here in Australia is actually an endangered species. I know I was! Yes that beautiful red wolf that is displayed on our post cards and tourist information, is actually heading down the slippery path to extinction, and this is happening right under our radar.
But how can this happen? How did your Aussie Icon get to this point?
Sadly it is the governments narrow minded and ill-informed policies but, more importantly, the powerful graziers lobby behind them that have brought this stunning animal to where it is now. It is for this reason that our government has listed the dingo as 'vermin' and has made it the only Australian native species that is NOT protected under laws. In fact they have gone the other way and put a $50 bounty on their heads to ensure quicker removal. And to make sure there is no public outcry or support, they spin myths and disinformation to support this criminal act. "A dingo ate my baby" is the cry I hear time and time again. In recorded history there as been only 12 dingo attacks... stack this against the 16,000 dog attacks yearly then it pulls it into perspective...besides the dingo was never truly proven guilty!! Like any wolf, these are shy animals that would rather avoid humans where possible.Dingo Tree.. Hunted dingoes are hung from fences and trees in some antiquated belief that it keeps away other dingoes. Notice strips of skin off back due to $50 bounty.
Day in day out these animals suffer long agonizing deaths through trapping, 1080 poisoning and professional Doggers who revel in their killing whilst totally unconcerned that they are helping a species disappear forever.
And 1080 poisoning should be looked at too. This is a Super-toxin that is one of the most poisonous substances known to man. There is NO second chance with this poison as it has NO antidote at all. And yet the government departments fly across our public National Parks and aerial bait indiscriminately. Farmers in rural areas lay it out, often without abiding by the rules, leaving it to be picked up by either pets or other animals especially after baits have been moved around. These animals die in excrutiating agony and it takes 2-24hrs of hell to finally kill them. This poison is very inhumane and even the RSPCA has condemned it. The rest of the world banned it years ago, and yet Australia and New Zealand throw it out there by the tonnes each and every year.BUT WHAT CAN I DO?
Please please take the time to sign this petition. Show our government that this can't be hidden any longer or tolerated. Each day that goes by means more dingoes suffer and are lost. Lets not leave our children nothing but a photo or a stuffed exhibit in a museum!!
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We the undersigned have become increasingly concerned at the governments attitude towards the canis lupus dingo
which you seem to mislabel as canis familiaris (
the domestic dog) despite DNA testing which shows the contrary. It seems that by labelling it as a dog, it makes it easier to justify having it on the 'vermin' list. The justification also seems to be that this species was introduced only 4,000-12,000 years ago so cannot be seen as a native species. However, as stated in your own report: Government Environment Protection and
Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999
native species means a species:
(a) that is indigenous to Australia or an external Territory; or
(b) that is indigenous to the seabed of the coastal sea of Australia or an external Territory; or
(c) that is indigenous to the continental shelf; or
(d) that is indigenous to the exclusive economic zone; or
(e) members of which periodically or occasionally visit:
(i) Australia or an external Territory; or
(ii) the exclusive economic zone; or (f) that was present in Australia or an external Territory before 1400
So as you can see by your own definition, canis lupus dingo
IS an Australian Native and as such should be protected and not hunted down as vermin with a $50 on it's head.
It seems that due to myths and misconceptions brought about by parties interested in seeing the eradication of the dingo, the public have been kept unaware of the real issues of how this species has now become threatened. Studies and research that now show the dingo as being an integral part of our ecosystem seem to be largely ignored. It has now been proven worldwide that the reintroduction of the apex predator actually benefits the ecosystem instead of destroying it, and the dingo is no different.
We are also extremely concerned that the main method of killing the dingo is through the use of super toxin 1080. It is strange, but as we look at the government reports on this substance, nowhere is it stated that this poison has been banned from around the world and for good reason too. It is extremely inhumane and the RSPCA has come out and condemned it as such. Animals take up to 24 hrs in some cases to die in complete agony and the indiscriminate aerial baiting certainly does not just affect the target animals. As there is no antidote for this poison, we would question the justification for using this in Australia and allowing not only it's use on rural and semi-rural properties, but also through our Public National Parks. It does affect other native species as shown by it%u2019s use in control of wallabies and possums. As recommendations by the company are to remove bodies by burying them deep or burning them, we would ask if it would not be seen as a health issue to allow them to remain lying in the National Parks, where the poison remains in the carcasses thus posing a secondary poison threat.
We the undersigned would like to see the following be considered:
1. The dingo to be placed on the endangered species list and protected as such.
2. Correct classification as canis lupus dingo
and not the domestic dog title of canis familiaris. The dingo is a separate species to the domestic dog!
3.Allocated sanctuary locations where the dingo is protected and free from 1080 baiting, bullets, traps and doggers.
4 A complete ban of 1080 in Australia, especially inside all of the PUBLIC OWNED National Parks and Reserves.
5. Redirected funding from baiting programmes and ineffective dingo fences to education and subsidies for graziers to help them live alongside the dingo.
We thank you for taking the time to read this article and hope that the strong public feeling out there, that is growing daily, will encourage you to look into the issue and take action to protect the dingo so that future generations can also enjoy it too and not curse us for destroying it like we did the thylacine.
We thank you for your time.