Australian authorities started a 5-day killing spree to shoot down thousands of wild camels using snipers mounted on helicopters. The exact figure is unclear but media reports suggest it can result in anything between five to 10 thousand dead camels.
There are approximately 1 to 1.2 million feral camels in Australia, and their numbers are thought to be doubling every 8-9 years. They occupy an area of approximately 3.3 million square kilometers of rangeland that incorporates many different land tenures.
Such a huge mass camel cull has drawn widespread condemnation world over, with many terming it to be inhumane. Social Media pouring millions of messages showing sympathy to the silent creatures.
Since 2012, Australia has been gunning down approx 75000 camels every year.
Ali Eroğlu, the president of the Central Council of the Turkish Veterinary Association, called for officials to show more sensitivity toward the issue, saying that the camels should be treated the way koalas and kangaroos have been.
Describing the move as “savage” and “incompatible with humanity,” Eroğlu said it was hypocritical of people to stay quiet on this issue.
“Why are those who accept the act of slaughtering millions of turkeys for New Year’s as ‘civilized’ and get up in arms over religious sacrifice festivals they deem ‘massacres’ not speaking up about what is happening in Australia? Where are the animal rights defenders?” he said, condemning what he called “the brutal massacre and the mentality that enables it.”
Meanwhile, the vice-chairman of the Istanbul-based Humanitarian Relief Foundation (İHH), Serkan Nergis, said his group would contact their colleagues in Australia to try to discuss what could be done about the situation.
Cut to 2020, Australia has the largest number of wild camels and their population is estimated to be around 300000. Fed up with its camels, Australia has declared them to be a pest and treats them as an alien invasive species that must be urgently stopped from spreading.
The most widely used method to check their population is aerial culling in which thousands of wild camels are shot down by snipers using helicopters.