Some Opinions about the Shooting of Camels in Australia

In connectin with my article “A Camel SOS Call from the Outreach of Australia, with the appeal as “Please help and support our cause to save the camels in Australia from mass shooting“, I recieved some responses both in the camel advocacy “Camel4life internatonal” whatsapps group and facebook. In the ensuing lines, I shall share with their names and brief introduction.

  1. Debi Robinson from Australia: I have just come from a visit from a Station (ranch) they have invited me to find alternative markets for their camels as it is not viable to transport the long distances to abbatoirs..this is the basic reasoning for culls. Transport does and kill price doesn’t bring income for desert farming. Many years ago, 1000 head of camels were quarantined and shipped to Indonesia as live meat trade but the shop was condemned and Government would not help with financing a new one.
  2. Natalie Mollett, a Vet. from Australia: Hi Raziq I hope this explains a little about why we need to cullferal camels. We have a serious problem with increasing droughts exacerbated by climate change. Many remote rural areas now have been declared water deficient and many remote aboriginal communities have no water at all. The camels are destroying habitat for endangered native flora and fauna. It is similar to the problem we have with feral horses in the blue mountains in New South Wales. For the sake of our environment we need to drastically reduce the number of wild camels donkeys buffaloes foxes dogs and cats. I do care for camels but they do not belong in Australia’s outback.
  3. Dr. Piers Simpkin, a camel scientist and camel herder in Kenya: Compared with many of the slaughter systems I have seen, the professional shooting of camels may be the least brutal and most humane way of killing them. Personally I would much prefer to be shot happily munching away in the Bush than be beaten and hauled onto a truck and then lined up with twenty other camels and prodded with goads into an abbattoir that smells of blood and death which I am sure the animals too recognise. I dont think that the way camels are managed in Australia is the problem. The main issue is that others have pointed out the Australian livestock industry is based on beef and sheep and wild camels destroy the rabbit and dingo control fences and possibly some of the water infrastructure associated with the beef and sheep industry; hence they are considered a pest. It is a pity that their economic and environmental values have not been recognised and that they be managed like wildlife and provided with watering points in the outback, with some domesticated for milk and others culled professionally and painlessly for meat. However in reality this is likely to be more expensive than large scale commercial farming beef and sheep aswell as not being able to fulfill market demands in terms of cost and quantity. Would love to go and visit and find out the real story.
  4. Amy, an Australian expat working as professor of Culture in Qatar University: I’ve been asking these questions of every Australian I’ve encountered! From what I understand so far; I think the difference is largely cultural, which in turn sets the tone for policy/politics. Australia’s animal industries are firmly rooted in beef/sheep production. As a Brit, prior to living in the Gulf around camels, I would have (had I considered it) been able to empathise with Australian perspective of camel-as-pest. Only after being educated in traditional camel cultures’ values, such as Bedouin, am I able to make that shift to valuing camel produce and as such see the utter waste in the animal in Australian context. But only really because of that. The camel remains this poorly understood and under-utilized pest/invasive species. Despite everything.
  5. Ilse Kohlor Rollefson, a camel conservationist from Germany in Rajasthan India: I agree. Aussies only think of sheep and cattle as livestock. Although the environment is ideal and much better for camels and they thrive without any inputs. Its all a question of culture.
  6. Calitropis Vijesh from Thar Desert Sindh Pakistan: So sad, they shoot them as it’s believed that they are drinking more water. But they don’t know that it’s only animal which can survive upto a month without water. They have understood camel very wrongly.
  7. Anne Orman from Australia: As much as I like Camels and other feral species as a native flora and fauna advocate I don’t support the protection of any non-native species.
  8. Chris Hill, a camel owner in Australia: Love all your comments , but everyone one jumps when it’s doom and gloom , if we could all support and promote the benefits on the camel then it would have a great sustainable industry in Australia.
  9. Mudassir Yasin, camel milk UK: It really is very disturbing and sad to learn of this pathetic and inhumane response by the Australian Government. Culling camels is not the answer. It was perfectly acceptable at one stage in history when Australia imported the camels into Australia from Pakistan and Afghanistan to shape and build Australia’s infrastructure and now quite ironically, these camels are being blamed for causing nuisance to Australia’s environment. Where would Australia be today if it wasn’t for the camels?
  10. My own comment, it is very unfortunate and painful to see such stories and pictures. The poor but very useful animal, the camel is just shot and killed for no use. The policymakers are really duffers. They must know the value of a camel. There must be a way to save these camels and to transfer to the other continents where the people are in love with the precious camels. Being the head of the camel advocacy group, Camel4Life, I consider this act as a crime. Please stoppppp.

Camel is a solution not a problem

Dr. Raziq

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  1. Good morning Dr Kakar, I think this is a much smaller example of a bush that grows in Mauritania, leptadenia…

  2. I believe this is salsola drummondii and may be useful for restoring degraded sodium affected land.

Camel is the best solution not a problem.

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