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Should crocodile safari hunting be practiced in the Northern Territory?

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Human Awareness Essay #2 Should crocodile safari hunting be practiced in the Northern Territory? Tristan Eckhoff - 22/7/2004 Word Count - 1149 Topic: Ecosystems E10.1 Give examples of species extinctions that have been brought about by human activities. Should crocodile safari hunting be practiced in the Northern Territory? They have been described as perfect, so perfect they have not changed in the past 200 million years. The Saltwater Crocodile, Crocodylus Porosus, grows to lengths of over 5 meters. It's enormous size and powerfully built body attained its reputation of being one of the most fearsome and efficient predators on earth. Issue: The Northern Territory Government wants to introduce safaris, which allow trophy hunters to shoot 25 saltwater crocodiles a year. The privileged hunters will pay as much as $30,000 per crocodile. The Government wants to adopt such a plan, that will aid the Government, and individuals, financially and possibly may help to regulate the rapidly escalating crocodile population. There are those who think otherwise, individuals have labeled it as inhumane. The safari hunting will damage the Territory's reputation for "icon crocs", could threaten species numbers and be difficult to regulate the cull. ...read more.


"In the wild they rip each others arms off...They are torn to pieces by each other". Shooting is, perhaps, the most humane way of killing a crocodile. The Impact: This proposal has many benefits, both for society as a whole and for individuals. Currently 600 crocodiles3 are legally captured in waters surrounding Darwin every year; most of them are rouge crocodiles, which are a threat. The sale of the skin and meat fetches a gross of $600, however if the Government wins the debate, some crocodiles could be worth up to $30,000. "Last year an operator was offered half a million dollars to help hunt and kill one f these monsters"4. If 25 of these beasts were shot each year, it would be a boost for the economy. However, the Territory will benefit, because the traditional landowners will receive a percentage if the safari takes place on their land, providing extra money for the families. This proposal will help regulate the rapidly rising crocodile population as it could remove breeding crocodiles. In the animal kingdom where size does matter, the larger crocodiles will always control more territory (usually at popular fishing spots) ...read more.


For those who are caught harvesting/hunting crocodiles without permits, they face a maximum penalty of "$2000 and/or 6 months imprisonment, with additional fines of up to $100 per animal or part thereof."6 Your Opinion: I think the current management program works very efficiently, it has been implemented for the last 30 years and has been modified a number of times to sustain both salt and fresh water crocodile populations. The proposal to modify the current management program should be a success as I can only see clear benefits as a result. In the future the numbers culled per year may need to either increase or decrease depending on variables such a population, habitat etc. However, the Government may need to employ more rangers or individuals who can monitor population numbers and be sure that there is no or very little poaching/hunting. Conclusion: Evidence shows that the commercial and social benefits outweigh the negative implications that could occur if the proposal were to go ahead. It would help the Territory economically as it has the potential to create jobs and produce an unknown gross profit. However, in order for this proposal to work the public must be educated and they must believe that this is best for the Territory. ...read more.

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