Kangaroos are synonymous with Australia – so people are understandably shocked when they learn that Australians kill kangaroos. The excuses given for this horrific practice are numerous: there are too many of them, they’re “pests”, they cause soil erosion, and so on. But is any of this rhetoric true?
That’s what the documentary Kangaroo: A Love-Hate Story aims to find out. Now, this must-see film is available to stream online.
The Cruel Reality of Kangaroo Hunting
At dusk, when groups of kangaroos are grazing peacefully, commercial and recreational roo hunters start shining blinding spotlights into the bush, looking for victims.
These hunters use rifles, and the national code of practice for kangaroo shooting requires a lethal shot to the head. But this often isn’t what happens, because shooting such a small area of an animal’s body from a distance in dim light is difficult, even for experienced hunters. The code also requires that hunters shoot “young at foot” (joeys who are no longer in the mother’s pouch) and decapitate or “crush the skull and destroy the brain” of “pouch young”, so they kill most joeys by swinging them against their vehicles to smash their heads in.
What’s It All For?
Spoiler alert: follow the money.
Kangaroo flesh is sold domestically – including for the Australian pet food market – as well as internationally, despite concerns about pathogenic contamination. Meanwhile, kangaroo skin is used as “k-leather” by shoe manufacturers.
Kangaroos are also killed to boost profits in animal agriculture, as they compete for food with animals raised for meat, leather, and wool.
In New South Wales, the state government has approved the commercial slaughter of more than 2.3 million kangaroos in 2020 – even though bushfires have already decimated wildlife populations.
We Animals Media
How You Can Help Kangaroos
- Get informed – gather a group of friends together and watch Kangaroo: A Love-Hate Story.
- Never buy kangaroo meat or anything made with “k-leather” – or any other animal skin. When you wear leather, there’s no way to tell whose skin you might be in. The only skin you should ever wear is your own.
- Join us in urging the New South Wales and Victorian governments to stop issuing permits for the mass slaughter of kangaroos. If you live locally, you can also write to your MP here.
Kangaroo: A Love-Hate Story is available worldwide on streaming platforms, including iTunes, Amazon, Google Play, Vimeo, Xbox, YouTube, and Vudu.