Saturday, 10 April 2010

Cairns turtle and dugong activist campaigns against slaughter caught on video

Former union activist turned environmental defender Colin Ridell, who counts Bob Irwin, John Mackenzie, Derryn Hinch and Greg Hunt MP among his loyal following, says the silence is deafening from the government to stop slaughter of turtles on the waters around Cairns.
Riddell is campaigning to reduce the taking of turtle and dugong, that is occurring under the protection of Native Title, until a complete scientific study is done to determine the actual numbers to be taken.
"It will be tightly controlled by the EPA and the elders with a permit system, that is monitored by special investigators. I and other indigenous elders support a moratorium to determine the take," Riddell says. "The skulls of each to be kept to determine actual permitted numbers taken, as is done in other permit systems."
He says that any breach would carry a substantial penalty, however advocates a complete ban in green zones, like all our coastal tourist areas. "I don't want international tourists and interstate visitors to take home horror stories."
The campaign follows the leaking of a graphic video showing a turtle having its flippers hacked off while still alive. RSPCA Queensland has called for a review of traditional hunting.
"It's just not good enough, this is a violent and obscene way to treat these animals, " Cairns resident Colin Riddell told CairnsBlog. "Any indigenous person is allowed to kill sea turtles and dugongs for weddings or funerals, but it has far beyond that, and is being commercially moved around the state.
"I don't want international tourists and interstate visitors to take back horror stories home," he says Riddell, who has taken his campaign to every State and Federal Government minister.
"I've written to the Minister for Local Government and Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Partnerships who have acknowledged my letter," Riddell says. "The replied thanking me for me letter and said it 'will be actioned as appropriate.' However I have received no response," he says.
Riddell has also wrote to Greg Combet for support, who he engaged with as a Manufacturing Workers Union site convener at the Australian Defence Industries Benalla plant. He says that Environment Minister Peter Garrett has also given him the "bum's rush."
"I received a response from the 'Parliamentary Clearance Officer' however it was totally unsatisfactory," Riddell said. "I told them to get my message Peter Garrett, which was a direct result of Jim Turnour's and Peter Garrett staffers. Weak efforts."
Another response from the International Whaling Commission fell on deaf ears. "I asked them why we condemn Japan when Australians do the same," Colin Riddell said. Julie Creek, responded. "Your message was deleted without being read."
The original poster of the graphic video says that it's fair enough if you have to kill turtles because it is a "traditional right" but who cuts the leg of a cow first and let it die in its own blood?
"No one is going to starve in Australia because we stop the killing of turtles. Australia earns millions of dollars with the tourism industry - with tourists who come to dive with turtles and in the same country we torture the turtles to death," the anonymous poster wrote. "Species will vanish forever and in the end it does not matter whose fault it was. This is not a question of human races this is a question of respect and ethics towards other creatures."
Colin Riddell and the RSPCA are trying to track down who shot the video and where it was taken, so they can investigate the incident. It is believed it was filmed in North Queensland mid last year.
"Until now cruelty to animals using traditional hunting methods has been put in the too hard basket by governments," Mark Townend of the RSPCA said. "Far from it, he said. We have Aboriginal and Torres Strait Island elders who support us on this issue. Hunting from tinnies with rifles is not traditional."
“We’re committed to ensuring that any breaches of the Animal Care and Protection Act are fully investigated while at the same time taking into consideration traditional hunting rights,” RSPCA chief inspector Michael Pecic says. “We can’t do this alone. We’re a charity and yet it appears we’re the only organisation that is taking this matter seriously.”
“We have Aboriginal and Torres Strait Island elders who support us on this issue," Riddell says. "Hunting from tinnies with rifles is not traditional. Leaving turtles and dugongs to be butchered alive and left to die on the beach is not traditional. We're not attacking the indigenous community. This is simply not an appropriate way to kill these animals."
James Epong, son of an aboriginal elder says that Ma:mu traditional owners have a right to hunt for protected species such as dugong and marine turtles that is recognised by Australian Law.
"Our Ma:mu traditional owners, who are also called the Mandubarra mob, have put aside some of these rights and signed a Traditional Use Marine Resource Agreement so they can protect rather that exploit dugong and marine turtles," James Epong says.
The agreement for their turtle business is co-ordinated through the Mandubarra Land and Sea Corporation and was finalised in June 2008.
"I am very proud to see that Ma:mu traditional owners are prepared to sacrifice rights and traditions, for the sake of helping threatened turtle and dugong stocks recover," Epong says. "Keep in mind the Ma:mu people are setting aside hunting and cultural practices that go back tens of thousands of years for the future benefit of all Australians."
In 1996, a landmark High Court decision concerned with particular pastoral titles, was passed regarding Native Title hunting rights. The decision did not allow anyone simply to claim Indigenous links and then hunt and kill native animals anywhere in Queensland. It authorised any legitimate native title holder to hunt and kill for genuine sustenance and other needs and without first obtaining a licence, but only in areas over which native title is held by that group.

The decision did not allow native title owners to trap or kill wildlife for commercial purposes, however Colin Riddell says that this is occurring. "These area being transported through the Cairns Airport in Eskys," he says.
Riddell says on his website that the 1996 decision says nothing one way or the other about using modern weapons like guns and powered boats to undertake traditional hunting. It is interesting that the use of harpoons, outboard-powered boats, and steel axes to kill the crocodiles as an exercise of native title hunting rights.
"It seemed to concern nobody on the High Court bench, with the possible exception of Justice Callinan. Followers of native title developments need to keep in mind the distinction between exercising an established native right in a modern way, as in the Yanner case, and the loss or abandonment of traditional and established native title rights themselves, as found by the trial judge to be a fatal flaw in the Yorta Yorta decision."
  • Commercial Exploitation of Hunting and Fishing Rights
    This issue, namely the extent to which the holders of native title may exercise the relevant rights in a "modern" fashion, and indeed the connected issue of whether they might even commercially exploit those rights, are difficult ones. Whilst not directly in issue in the Yanner case, these issues are of considerable importance in the broader scheme of Australian native title law – and are yet to be answered conclusively.

    Some important developments in this area are taking place in Canada. In the Supreme Court of Canada’s 1997 decision in Delgamuukw v British Columbia, the majority judges noted that, while the rights of Indigenous title holders in that jurisdiction are not limited to engagement in activities which are aspects of practices, customs, and traditions integral to the claimant group’s distinctive Indigenous culture, lands held by Aboriginal title cannot be used in a manner that is irreconcilable with the nature of the claimants’ attachment to those lands.

    So, for example, tribal hunting areas may not be "strip mined" or, so it would seem, "hunted out" or "fished out" in a large-scale commercial operation. Contrast this with small-scale trading between local Indigenous people and others, for which there is some historical and anthropological evidence in Australia and elsewhere.

    There are important legal differences between the doctrines of Aboriginal title in Canada and Australia, but there are also some important similarities which indicate that these Canadian developments might in the future be of relevance in Australia. Of course, it is also important in Australia to note that the Commonwealth Native Title Act moderates but does not destroy the capacity of the States and Territories to regulate the exercise of native title rights along with other rights, as in fishing, conservation, and safety legislation which might apply equally to Indigenous and non-Indigenous people alike.
"Jim Turnour says this is a racial issue," Colin Riddell says. "You know, I’m disgruntled as well. You know what I do. I tell you what, I’m begging people to vote for Warren Entsch in and get rid of Jimmy," he says.

See the shocking video here...

42 comments:

Mark Bailey said...

Gday, I am running a petition and a campaign to save the Port Adelaide Dolphins habitat from being dredged and destroyed by developers on Torrens island in South Australia.

This is a protected sanctuary but the SA government wants to rezone this and this will harm the dolphins existance in the river.

Here's the FaceBook page.

and this is our petition to the premier of SA

If you guys could mention this to your readers it would be great.My campaign is all about informing peiople of this environmental vandalism

JUST LOOKING TO GET MORE SIGNATURES ON OUR PETITION, WE HAVE OVER 500 SIGNATURES FROM ALL OVER THE WORLD AT THE MOMENT, BUT MORE AUSSIES SIGNING WOULD BE GREAT.

mark bailey said...

I dont believe in this day and age that the native title act should allow for hunting of turtles or dugongs anymore.If we were going to apply the act under the guise that its traditional then we would also say that the methods being used to catch them must be traditional and the methods definetly are not.
Aboriginals historically were very good at maintaining the balance in their environment, these days its hard to justify that what is occuring is sustainable.
This is not a racist debate its about the humane treatment of animals and making sure their populations are sustainable.

I am embarrassed said...

Is it not funny we aussies hate baby seal killers, we loathe japanese whalers , we hate dolphin murderers in europe and we can,t stand anything else cruel overseas ?
But here are two disgusting issues here at home , god I AM ASHAMED .
Lets support both.
Thanks colin and mark and mike

johnyperk said...

my name is Frances Iam part aborignial. I am against what happened to the turtle while it was still a live , the pain the animal went through. How would they like a limb or limbs hacked off like that.There was no need to use cruelty,
The poor defenceless turtle .

Al said...

This video truly disgusts me. Any attempts in the past to deal with this outrageous practice gets shouted down by the 'traditional rights' mob as a racist attack on their way of life - which is utter bullshit and everyone knows it. And aside from the cruelty involved; are these people too dumb to understand you cannot feast upon the extinct? Government should stop pussyfooting around on this issue and act.

Grona said...

Interesting juxtaposition to Wild Rivers postings where many bloggers refer to indigenous people having looked after country for 40,000 years etc so don't need WR legislation to protect the rivers AND the turtle video showing effectively that murris are just like the rest of us and will use the means available (guns, outdoor motors etc) to kill animals often unsustainably in exactly the same way that whitefellas do and have done for 200 years.

In fact it's racist to say otherwise i.e. that murris would behave differently re- environmental protection given the means or the money than whitefellas.

Desperate Dan said...

It's hard to see how getting the appalling Stench back in power will benefit turtles and dugongs Mr Riddler. The fumes have barely dissipated from his 11 year stint making matters worse.

Please explain why you want this grotesque caricature back in the seat of Leichhardt.

Stacey OBrien said...

This is a disgusting and barbaric practice that must STOP.

the violence and inhumane actions performed here in front of these little children leave no questions....this argument is not about race, it is about cruelty to animals and desensitizing children in this way cannot be tolerated....

A real hunter kills cleanly and quickly...this is not hunting....this is torture.....how will these kids feel when turtles become extinct?

colin riddell said...

Desperate Dan here is your response

The reason I asked on air to get people to vote against Jim turnour, was no one from the labor side and I mean everyone of them.

Not just turnour has offered any help what so ever with this issue.

I have been running this by myself with help from a few locals and cape persons since about august last year.

Since that time I have rung OR emailed every party member of the greens and labor person individually.

And every environment group .

Actually mike Moore has part of the 200 odd emails he may wish to put on the site if he want to.


And in desperation I emailed the lnp mp Greg hunt shadow environment minister AFTER garrets office hung up on me twice.


Then the next day warren entsch rang me and offered to help .

Me being a very staunch labor person and worked hard to beat his protege at the last election was surprised , so I arranged to meet him .
I sussed him out and was convinced he cared about the animals not his election prospects .

He has been fearless saying all the things the other weak worms will not say.


From that day he has been nothing but a great help , helping me as has Greg hunt.


On the other hand all the local members have been deadly silent and have had no contact .

Hoping they don,t have speak up in fear losing their indigenous vote.

Jim even declaring this a racial issue for god sake!

I have as many indigenous people helping getting this sorted as whites, they realise if it continues as it has , it will end up being completely banned.

So if you want to ridicule warren for helping at least use your real name , it is what men do .

And I could not care less who runs against Jim mumbles turnour he is a waste space.

If you had run Dan I would have asked them to vote for you!

I and others proved you could get someone as hopeless as him elected.

For proof
HERE IS ONE OF HUNDREDS

: 3/12/2010 6:06:26 AM

To: jim.turnour.mp@aph.gov.au

Subject: Pity you just wrote in the gazette it is only the illegal hunting that concerns you ! Colin

I will not respond again just watch the video and ask yourself , can I DO NOTHING ?


So in closing don't make this a political rant story it is an animal cruelty issue .

Bryan Law said...

My usual challenge to this issue is to ask “how do impacts compare between indigenous hunting, industrial production, and intensive recreation?”

While indigenous hunting can be emotionally confronting, many more species threats and extinctions arise out of the everyday commercial clearing/fishing/development of habitat that results from European financial and social organisation.

In terms of recreation, I’d be very happy to see more regulation of weapons, boats, and vehicles, and a tighter limit on the take. But really, that would have to be for everyone. That way we wouldn’t be picking on some poor bloody blackfella, again!

We might even try to bring Cape Alumina under control.

Fajar Sahrudin, Bandar Lampung, Indonesia said...

there must be action

Al said...

Here we go again, more of Bryan Law's pontificating on behalf of "poor bloody blackfellas". The issue here is not just the unregulated taking of endangered species. It's the sheer bloody cruelty of it - neatly described by Bryan as "emotionally confronting".
How can you advocate equality for the indigenous people of Australia by allowing such practices to continue? How can you excuse it by saying "many more species threats and extinctions arise out of the everyday commercial clearing/fishing/development of habitat that results from European financial and social organisation" as if one thing excuses the other?
This is not a blackfella versus whitefella issue as Bryan always tries to paint it, it's an 'Australian' issue where environmental laws and animal welfare/cruelty laws should apply equally to all.

Knows collin is right said...

The most hated white man in cairns who has very few friends so sides with any other colour asks?
My usual challenge to this issue is to ask
“how do impacts compare between indigenous hunting, industrial production, and intensive recreation?”
stuffed if we know so you run a campaign on the other three and let colin run this one you dickhead.

hieronymus bosch said...

Not so long ago sailors would keep turtles alive for weeks, slowly dismembering them, in order to eat fresh meat daily.

So, is it the way they are hunted that we are taking objection to, or just hunting all together?

Perhaps we should give them bolt guns for 'humane' killings.

How many 'tourists' have seen these practices take place?

Is the hunting of these beasts out of necessity or just because it is fun?

Just wondering.

Tyson Hayter said...

Great post, Mike!

Desperate Dan said...

Thanks for reply Colin. Nevertheless, you are prepared to trust Stentsch who did nothing about this for 11 years in govt when things were just as they are today (and known about). Now in opposition he can say whatever he feels like if he thinks there is a vote in it in the full knowledge that this is an issue that is in the too hard basket (otherwise he would have done something in the 11 years he was in govt)

P.S. Desperate Dan is actually my real name and Wayne Rooney, the Man U centre forward is my illicit love child.

Queensland wildlife watcher said...

This must go viral!!!

Absolutely appalling cruelty.

Displays nothing of the "respect for land and creatures" that gets spewed out to tourists or anyone else who is blinded by the cotton wool veil of traditional hunting and gathering.

WHERE THE HELL IS QNPWS?!

Queensland wildlife watcher said...

This must go viral!!!

Absolutely appalling cruelty.

Displays nothing of the "respect for land and creatures" that gets spewed out to tourists or anyone else who is blinded by the cotton wool veil of traditional hunting and gathering.

WHERE THE HELL IS QNPWS?!

save our turtles said...

Hi Mike,

thanks for your interest. I put, of course, the video on you tube, because I am quite frustrated of what we had to experience in the Torres Strait on an almost daily basis.

The whole thing is so political that no one wants to do anything but it is just pathetic that we pay millions of dollars to try keeping dugongs and turtles alive and yet they are caught exceeding 500 to 1000 animals per species per year.

The problem is also that people try to misuse the debate for their own political agenda but I am only interested in finding ways of saving species from extinction.

colin riddell said...

I share your passion saveourturtles
thanks for posting the video, check your youtube inbox. colin/ snraic

'Black market' in dugong and turtle meat in far north Queensland, Opposition says Steven Wardill From: The Courier-Mail April 13, 2010 4:43PM 15
?BLACK market dugong and turtle meat was regularly being transported in eskies from the Torres Strait to Cairns, the Opposition has claimed.
Opposition frontbencher Glen Elmes today claimed in Parliament that that the illegal meat load was sent on commercial flights from Horn Island and fetched $50 a kilogram.

Mr Elmes also highlighted a YouTube video of the dismembering of a live turtle, saying the practice was “brutal’’ and inhumane’’ but being ignored by authorities.

The October 2009 video shows a large turtle being dragged out of the water on its back while several Indigenous men hack off the animals flippers.

“Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people are entitled to hunt using traditional methods for their own consumption, the LNP recognises, acknowledges and supports that entitlement, Mr Elmes said.


Start of sidebar. Skip to end of sidebar.
.End of sidebar. Return to start of sidebar.

“But no one is entitled to transport kill, no one is entitled to sell the meat.’’

Comment is being sought from the State Government

colin riddell said...

STORY HAS GONE NATIONAL IN THE MELBOURNE AGE


Hunting for dugong, turtles 'cruel' TOM ARUP AND PETER KER
April 15, 2010

THE RSPCA says indigenous hunting methods for dugongs and green sea turtles are inhumane and is urging the federal government to stamp out cruelty in hunting methods.

The RSPCA's concerns come as the opposition today will announce that a Coalition government would stop the poaching of dugongs and sea turtles, stamp out brutality in hunting and ''end the commercial sale of dugong and turtle meat''.

Opposition environment spokesman Greg Hunt will also commit to reducing the take of dugongs and sea turtles by 90 per cent.

''The traditional owners, along with many individuals and groups, are among the strongest advocates of enforcement against poachers and against the brutality on dugongs and turtles as part of this illegal practice,'' Mr Hunt said.

Under the Native Title Act 1993, native title holders can legally hunt dugongs and green turtles for personal, domestic or non-commercial communal needs.

But RSPCA Queensland spokesman Michael Beatty said the RSPCA wanted state laws amended to remove the exemption for traditional hunting to ensure the humane killing of animals.

Mr Beatty said that, when hunted, green sea turtles often had their flippers cut off while they were still alive and were then left on beaches in the sun. He said live dugongs were often tied to wharves and had parts of their flesh cut off intermittently to keep the meat fresh.

''In this day and age with refrigeration and freezing, you don't need to be as cruel as that,'' Mr Beatty said.

Mr Beatty added he had received reports that dugong and turtle meat was being flown into Cairns airport from the Torres Straight and sold on a black market in town. He said the meat industry was being driven by illegal poaching.

A spokeswoman for the federal Environment Department said 13 offences had been recorded for illegal hunting of dugongs in the Great Barrier Reef World Heritage Area since 2008.

The Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority estimates there are 11,300 dugongs in the reef marine parks. The authority's Dr Mark Read said yesterday estimates suggested that an absolute maximum of 120 dugongs a year could be sustainably hunted throughout the reef.

The authority has several voluntary sustainable hunting agreements with traditional owners in the area - but has concerns that poachers not connected to traditional owners were hunting too many animals.

The park authority has also established an indigenous compliance officer who will work with traditional owners around Cairns to help stamp out poaching.

Enough Rope said...

It remains sad but true,if those responsable for these a atrocities had to use traditional methods for hunting they would starve.

They like so many other wish to benefit from advancements in society while clinging to traditional use loopholes for financial benefit!

Colin Riddell said...

Rob pyne needs praise ,he is a bloomin bloke with a heart not a votebook!
Dugongs and Turtles Not A Dead Issue
In Cairns Regional Council on 15/04/2010 at 4:14 pm


What follows is an extract from the minutes of the last Council meeting and media comment that followed:

1. ANIMAL PROTECTION

PYNE / BONNEAU

That Cairns Regional Council write to the State and Commonwealth Government, requesting a complete ban on the killing of dugongs and turtles in Green Zones in the Cairns Regional Council area.

lost with Councillors Leu, Cochrane, Forsyth, Cooper, Blake, Lesina and Gregory voting against the motion

4CA AM (Cairns)
John Mackenzie – 11:33 AM
Station Ph: 07 4042 8000

Mackenzie talks to Cairns Councillor Robert Pyne about local council’s decision regarding the slaughter of turtles and dugongs. He says that he was trying to make the issue very simple but that the majority of councillorsfound it to be complex, noting that his plan was to lobby govt for a ban on the killings in green zones.

Pyneremarks that there was no room for gray areas in the legislation and that a ‘blanket ban’ was necessary as it removes loopholes, noting that he was hoping it would pass so people could tell Brisbane that the local community wants it to stop. Pyne states that some parliamentary members have some ’solidarity’ to a particular party or group and are forced into some positions they might not agree with or their constituents may not agree with.
© Media Monitors 2010
Interviewees: Robert Pyne, Councillor, Cairns
Duration: 4:14
Summary ID: W00038599733





--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
4CA AM (Cairns)
John Mackenzie – 15/04/2010 – 11:23 AM
John MacKenzie
Station Ph: 07 4042 8000

Mackenzie talks to the Shadow Environment Minister Greg Hunt about animal protection authorities missing in action as protected marine turtles are inhumanely slaughtered in the Far North and council having to do more to stop the practice. He says that he is ’supportive’ of the Port Douglas councillor and tells the other ones to stop talking and start more direct actions to stop the practice as it is ‘unacceptable’.

Hunt remarks that traditional owners have said that they will give 100% support to stopping the slaughter and that along with the support of Warren Entsch the opposition wants to see a 90% reduction in takes, an Indigenous ranger program and ruthlessness towards people who breach the rules. Hunt says that a lot of killing is being done ‘in the name of’ cultural practices as well as in a violent way that has nothing to do with culture, only brutality. He comments that he would like to see the killings firstly stopped in tourism areas as the turtle slaughter and tourism are ‘incompatible’. Mackenzie notes that if council supported Councillor Pyne’s motion to stop the killings it would have stopped it in green zones but they failed to do that. Hunt says that the issue has now gone national and that the opposition will continue to push the issue, further noting that there is an illegal trade of turtle and dugong flesh that must be stopped.
© Media Monitors 2010

Interviewees: Greg Hunt, Shadow Environment Minister
Duration: 9:59
Summary ID: W00038599484


ME PERSONALLY THINK THEY MISSED A CHANCE TO DO SOMETHING POSITIVE.
JULIA WHATEVER YOU ARE A SUPRISE ,NOT A GOOD ONE!

B Grainger said...

I understand natives to eat the odd turtle or two, but please do it in a humane way and let them NOT suffer

colin riddell said...

THIS IS MY PERSONAL VIEW
I think this will help , your thoughts ?
:
My recommendations on alterations to the native title act 1993

1. Turtles and dugongs must be dispatched humanely.
Humanely must be defined

2.A moratorium to be imposed ASAP to determine sustainable numbers by scientific study

3.Permits must be issued by DPI or similar body to elders nominated to issue.
This would help restore respect to elders , as it stands now elders have no back up for non compliance.


4.Government rangers and indigenous rangers to be appointed to monitor permit use , this would help elders to refuse family/relations demanding extras.
And skulls or shells to be kept for proof of permit compliance , any extras found action to be instigated .
This would give the elders a strong excuse to refuse extras as they can say they are heavily monitored.


5.Any breach by anybody to be prosecuted by severe penalties.

6.No killing of sea turtles and dugongs by anyone in green zones especially high tourist areas ,e.g. Great barrier reef.

7.Any animal on the endangered species list to be excuded from killing by anyone .

THESE ARE MY OPINIONS ONLY .

It is no good moaning without offering a possible solution .

Did an interview on 2ue today ,if you want to hear it mike may post it.

saobiskit2002 said...

You pathetic people, how can you kill an animal this way. You complain all the time of the treatment you receive or have received yet you can treat an innocent animal this way.. I have changed my mind on you, I am nearly crying and feel sick to the stomach

sedatedcoho said...

Yes this is disgusting and should be stopped, but are our politicians too spineless and PC to speak out against this?

thevoice1969 said...

Savages is all that comes to min

colin riddell said...

Don't attack the people attack the non regulation of the process that allows it to happen .
Adopt my recommendations and it might help or think of your own.
1. Turtles and dugongs must be dispatched humanely.

Humanely must be defined



2.A moratorium to be imposed ASAP to determine sustainable numbers by scientific study



3.Permits must be issued by DPI or similar body to elders nominated to issue.

This would help restore respect to elders , as it stands now elders have no back up for non compliance.





4.Government rangers and indigenous rangers to be appointed to monitor permit use , this would help elders to refuse family/relations demanding extras.

And skulls or shells to be kept for proof of permit compliance , any extras found action to be instigated .

This would give the elders a strong excuse to refuse extras as they can say they are heavily monitored.





5.Any breach by anybody to be prosecuted by severe penalties.



6.No killing of sea turtles and dugongs by anyone in green zones especially high tourist areas ,e.g. Great barrier reef.



7.Any animal on the endangered species list to be excuded from killing by anyone .

THEY ARE JUST MY THOUGHTS FEEL FREE TO PUT YOURS.

Syd Walker said...

I've been reluctant to get involved with this debate as I know little about the topic and the politics are clearly red hot.

However, I've been prodded to read a little more - enough to firm up a personal opinion that we should take URGENT steps to better protect dugong habitat and stop ALL intentional or avoidable killing of these wonderful animals, including hunting.

It's worth reading the whole of the GBRMPA's webpage on dugong. Within Australia, four threatening process are highlighted:
* Boat strike and disturbance from boats, ships and other motorised machines
* Habitat loss from coastal development and declining water quality
* Incidental catch in mesh net fishing and shark control programs
* Traditional hunting

There seems to be a lack of accurate data about the impact of these various factors on the dugong population. Even so, there are indications that the 'traditional hunting' catch is unsustainable.

So, while action is needed on ALL fronts, I think it's time the community as a whole negotiated an end to dugong killing with traditional owners.

Surely that native title right can be relinquished in return for compensation? It's the process used by Australia's mining industry – without which it would have ground to a halt over the last 15 years.

If we can compensate to facilitate mining, we can surely do likewise to help ensure the long-term survival of an extraordinary wild life-form we all love?

Compensation need not be in the form of cash payments. That's an option, but legally-binding, long-term agreements on Aboriginal employment in conservation work is another possibility that might be more appropriate.

colin riddell said...

I agree , syd there you go .
I missed your blog

col Riddell said...

syd walker
I just looked at page one of your blog and it is full of israel bagging , IF I HAD PEOPLE WITH YOUR ENERGY HELPING INSTEAD OF YOUR ANTI ISRAEL RANTS , WE WOULD SOLVE A REAL CONCERN .
you can keep cafnec I ,LL DO MY THING.
1. You just have to feel sorry for the folk who run the Jewish Agency and Israeli Prime Minister’s office

2. During August, I had a poll running on this website in which I invited visitors to vote for the name they thought best suited to the small nation-state in the Middle East commonly known as ‘Israel’ since its inception in 1948

3. If it was only a matter of hate – something they understand rather well – they’d be laughing!

But life is not that simple. There’s also pesky, insidious thing called love to worry about. Love may be prove to be the most serious existential threat to the millennial fantasies of Zion’s elders

4.A series of explosive reports today’s Guardian newspaper (from Britain) details the almost romantic relationship between the governments of South Africa and Israel in the decades preceding the collapse of South African Apartheid in the late 1980s



5.Today Israeli commandoes boarded the main ship in the Gaza flotilla and opened fire, killing a currently unknown number of unarmed peace activists (highest reports so far 15) and injuring many more

Syd Walker said...

Colin - While I'm always open to comments, advice and suggestions, the causes to which I choose to devote voluntary time is my business.

You write: "IF I HAD PEOPLE WITH YOUR ENERGY HELPING INSTEAD OF YOUR ANTI ISRAEL RANTS , WE WOULD SOLVE A REAL CONCERN."

Who the hell do you think you are?

After your latest contributions to this debate, if I do choose to spend more time on the dugong issue, you can be sure I shaln't be doing it as your offsider.

Janet said...

Col,

With regard to the McKenzie interveiw.
Did you tell Bob Irwin that Macca was mates with Gavin King, or did you conveniently forget? Knowing Bob would have walked out if he had of realised the media connection to his family grief...

colin riddell said...

Janet .
I wont lie no I did not.
The reason being even if I did bob would have still done it for the animals that is the sort of man he is.
What you are refering to is gavins story on bobs relationship with his grandchildren .
Bob is very angry with gavin and he said he and his lovely wife get over 200 emails a day due to gavins story that was totally incorrect, bob has no problem with access to young bob and bindi.
I won't tell you what bob would like to do to gavin.
But he did ask me prior to his visit ask me if I knew gavin and I SAID YES.

Janet said...

Thanks Col,

I appreciate your very honest answer

colin riddell said...

You are welcome janet I think gavin is lucky he id not run into bob while he was in cairns.
And to be honest I have met thousands of people in my time on earth ,but no one like bob he is special I know now where steve got his passion from.
I have people from all walks in my life but it is a privelege to know bob irwin.
Kenton campbell seems to be the same sort of bloke.

Alison Alloway said...

Siltation from dredging the Cairns Harbour as well as effluent running out to sea caused significant decreases in the meadows of seagrasses alongside our shore. I believe there were some studies done by the GBRMPA sometime in the early 1990s?? This was one of the motivating factors behind the Clean Waters requirement..the bill of which was passed on to the Cairns Regional Council and which caused such a furore from Cairns residents during the first Schier Council budget. I note the call is out again to dredge the Cairns Harbour...the question must be asked, "At what cost?"

Diane Thompson said...

Remember who to Vote for if you want to help stop Dugongs and Sea Turtles cut up alive. Peter Garret will do nothing

Joseph O'Sullivan said...

Collin I don’t know why you just don’t come out and say what you're real intentions are and that is being disgruntled with the ALP because you have sort preselect ion and are too incompetent to even spell the word yet alone win one.

If you had spent any time with Indigenous people in Far North Queensland you'd realise that this particular incident is isolated and that the practice of Dugong and Turtle hunting is steeped in custom and knowledge passed on for thousands of years. You are correct that this particular video is torture and severe animal cruelty; however when traditional hunting is executed properly following custom, Lore and tradition death is quick.

Norman said...

Lets not just slam Traditional Owners here, nor the provisions granted under the Native Title Act for them regarding hunting ect. Queensland is on the verge of an explosion of heavy industry ports right up the coast from Gladstone to remote Cape York. All of these ports threaten dugong, turtle, dolphin and other marine species and habbitats. Aboriginal people are not solely responsible for the death of turtle and dugong. Their method of killing may be questionable, but they are not the biggest threat to the survival of these animals and environments.

Colin Riddell said...

As Tony burke says it is factually wrong, indigenous hunting is the biggest threat to dugongs and sea turtles.

And it is not my opinion but people that know that are government funded and must stay mute, but bob Irwin, Pete bethune and I have met them and their evidence is beyond doubt,

Like I have said all the other threats add to the loss BUT uncontrolled unmonitored indigenous and others add to their demise.

And I never slam anyone and count many many indigenous persons amongst my friends, No one in 2011 should hunt an endangered animal in any country, especially under the guise of native tradition.

Norman why not put your name as I did?