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Australia: Holiday crocodile hunts planned - UK Press Item


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Inviato da Wes von Papinešu on Febbraio 16, 2000 at 17:02:01:

DAILY TELEGRAPH (London, UK) 15 February 00 Holiday crocodile hunts planned
Tourists should be given permits to hunt crocodiles to keep down numbers and create an economic boom in the far north of Australia, according to a mayor in the heart of reptile country, writes Barbie Dutter in Sydney.
Graham Elmes, of Cook Shire, northern Queensland, said yesterday that the need for a cull combined with the lure of big game hunting provided a solution to some of the region's most pressing problems.
He said the area was overpopulated with crocodiles, which were being pushed out of their normal habitat by development and were posing an increasing threat to humans.
Crocodiles were "just another commodity" that could be turned into an economic bonus for the shire, where many Aborigines are unemployed.
Jobs could arise, he said, from the need for guides and rangers as well as from the extra spending by tourists.
A Crocodile Committee has been set up to formulate plans for tourists to trap or shoot crocodiles, a proposal that would need approval by the state government before it could be implemented. Mr Elmes said the plans would not amount to open slaughter.
Surveys would be taken and culling permits would be issued only in areas where there was evidence that the crocodile population had exploded.
The proposal was immediately condemned by Leannie Mackie, the president of the Far North Environmental Council, who said crocodiles were protected in Queensland because their numbers were dwindling.
"To have tourists hunting them is outrageous," she said.




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