Australia’s native wildlife has been decimated by introduced species, including feral cats which can get HUGE. The Weekend Australian notes that wild cat hunts by the native Pintubi people around Alice Springs are being encouraged
The Pintubi hunters have asked the Barnett government to help them make cat hunting a week-long event every month, over an even wider area of their traditional lands. They have applied for $50,000 for a four-month trial that would cover the monitoring of native species and employ someone to co-ordinate and document cat hunts. The Central Desert Native Title Service is already supporting the push with a $100 bounty per cat, considered a gesture to reimburse groups for the petrol used over the course of a day in the desert.
“We realise that traditional tracking is only ever going to be applicable to the management of relatively small-scale conservation sites, such as a 15km radius around a community, but we believe that if cat hunting can be regular, ongoing and strategically focused it can continue to be an important tool in the recovery of threatened species in the western deserts,” said Dr Paltridge.
“We see this approach to threatened species conservation as an important alternative to relying on predator-proof fencing to protect rare wildlife”.