TO keep our ecosystem true and preserve native wildlife, protecting dingoes should become a priority, according to a Martin resident.
Glenn Dewhurst wants Australia’s most iconic predator to be placed on the protected species list.
Comment News staff visited his property, which is also home to Alpine dingo Lilly, Pilbara dingo Sophie, and two Bogong dingoes Mitch and Zac.
He knows dingoes have attacked people, but is still convinced we should all get behind a push to protect them.
“People need to understand that there have been more shark attacks and deaths this year than there have been dingo deaths in the past 15 years,” Mr Dewhurst said.
“Any animal is dangerous… you have to treat it properly, respect it.
“The African governments are more responsible in preserving wildlife than the Australian government.
“Lions and elephants kill hundreds of people each year in Africa, but the governments from that continent still protect these animals.”
Mr Dewhurst wants people to understand taking the carnivore, which has been on the top of Australia’s food chain for 40,000 years, does not make sense.
“We take dingoes out of our ecosystem and we’ll have more problems with cats, wild dogs, rabbits and foxes.
“It seems ridiculous that we spend lots of money looking after orangutans, tigers and baboons overseas, yet we are driving our own species to extinction.”
He knows that some sheep farmers will be critical of his views, but sees enlisting them into his campaign as crucial.
“If young dingoes don’t have an alpha male, because it’s been shot, they could join a dog pack and kill sheep,” he said.
“And, if we do not start protecting dingoes now, they will become extinct like the Tasmanian tiger.
“A bounty was put on the heads of Tasmanian tigers, because it was believed they killed sheep,” Mr Dewhurst said.
“It was later found the jaw structure of the Tasmanian tiger was not big enough to kill sheep.”
Victoria is the only jurisdiction that protects dingoes and that state has set aside large parcels of land for the canines, which are now being studied.
More dingo details from Mr Dewhurst:
- Dingoes are in more trouble than black cockatoos.
- Dingoes do not bark, they are related to the wolf family and howl. However, domestic dogs can teach dingoes how to bark.
- Dingoes will be extinct in 50 years if we don’t protect them now.
- Dingoes don’t smell like dogs and they clean themselves like cats.
- There are four species of dingoes.
- The only reason dingoes attack people is when people interfere with them.