Indicator: BD-23 Some selected nationally significant native terrestrial species subjected to harvesting and population trends
The 2001 State of the Environment (SoE) Biodiversity theme report provided a significant amount of information on wildlife harvesting and the economic value of species and ecosystems.
The harvesting of native flora and fauna for domestic and export purposes is controlled by various legislation in each State and Territory.
The Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999 regulates the commercial export of most wild harvested native plants and animals (including their products) from Australia. The Act also bans the export for commercial purposes of live native vertebrate animals, except fish. Wild harvested specimens may be harvested after the appropriate permits have been obtained under a management program.
A significant number of species used for trading are protected under national legislation through approved management plans
|State||Program Name||Species||Approval Period|
|New South Wales||Kangaroo||Macropus rufus
Macropus robustus robustus
|1 January 2002||31 December 2006|
|Protected and Threatened Plants in the Cut Flower Industry: Management Plan 2002-2005||23 August 2002||30 June 2005|
|Northern Territory||Management Program for Crocodylus porosus and Crocodylus johnstoni in the Northern Territory of Australia (1999)||Crocodylus porosus Crocodylus johnstoni||1 January 2004||Approval of a revised plan|
|Queensland||Wildlife Trade Management Plan for Export - Commercially Harvested Macropods||Macropus rufus
|1 January 2003||31 December 2007|
|South Australia||The Macropod Conservation and Management Plan for South Australia||Macropus rufus
|1 January 2003||31 December 2007|
|Tasmania||Brushtail Possum||Trichosurus vulpecula (Kerr)||1 January 2000||31 December 2004|
|Tree-fern||Dicksonia antarctica||19 December 2001||31 December 2004|
|19 December 2001||31 December 2004|
|Western Australia||Red Kangaroo (Macropus rufus) Management Plan for Western Australia||Macropus rufus||1 January 2003||31 December 2007|
|Grey Kangaroo (Macropus fuliginosus) Management Plan for Western Australia||Macropus fuliginosus||1 January 2003||31 December 2007|
|Western Australia Flora||1 July 2003||30 June 2008|
Source: Department of the Environment and Heritage 2005,
Approved wildlife trade management plans, viewed 26 Sep 2005,
Harvest of all waterfowl species in Queensland 1983-2000
Source: Environmental Protection Agency 2002, Conservation and management of duck and quail in Queensland 2000-2005, viewed N/A, http://www.epa.qld.gov.au/publications?id=1252, Figure 6 page 6
The population size of kangaroos has fluctuated in the harvested areas of Australia between 15 and 35 million animals over the past 20 years, depending on seasonal conditions. All the species that are subject to commercial harvesting are common species. Before approving any management plans that allow for the commercial harvest and export of kangaroos or kangaroo products, the Australian Government considers factors such as kangaroo biology, population size and trends and conservation status of kangaroo species. At present, there ares insufficient data available on actual kangaroo populations and population characteristics to demonstrate that harvesting does not have a detrimental impact either on the harvested species or their ecosystems.
(Euro / Wallaroo)
|1991||1 365 716||1 270 877||158 213||113 791||4 226||2 912 823|
|1992||1 308 140||1 183 681||182 814||139 943||2 071||2 816 649|
|1993||1 319 693||1 273 922||207 397||172 449||2 737||2 976 198|
|1994||1 425 553||1 328 561||311 504||225 644||1 965||3 293 227|
|1995||1 435 614||1 306 747||301 405||214 916||1 766||3 260 448|
|1996||1 447 698||1 066 364||353 650||232 502||909||3 101 123|
|1997||1 171 300||704 137||264 656||148 803||791||2 289 687|
|1998||1 344 214||800 707||242 630||204 789||217||149||70||2 592 776|
|1999||1 278 469||925 946||240 727||152 782||1 279||421||515||2 600 139|
|2000||1 173 242||1 106 208||227 552||238 439||357||584||20||2 746 402|
|2001||1 364 682||1 438 280||283 332||296 805||256||6 884||2 020||3 392 259|
|2002||1 500 588||1 810 426||330 372||257 140||190||4 392||2 169||3 905 277|
|2003||1 121 724||1 758 173||246 672||347 914||0||0||0||3 474 483|
|2005 Commercial Kangaroo harvest quotas|
|NSW||445 300||550 820||143 963||35 616||0||0||0||1 175 699|
|Qld||472 332||1 081 340||0||338 279||0||0||0||1 891 951|
|SA||237 600||0||97 900||76 400||0||0||0||411 900|
|WA||250 000||0||180 000||0||0||0||0||430 000|
|Total||1 405 232||1 632 160||421 863||450 295||0||0||0||3 909 550|
Source: Department of the Environment and Heritage 2005, Kangaroo harvesting statistics, viewed 7 Nov 2005, http://www.deh.gov.au/biodiversity/
Of the 2 examples provided, number of kangaroos harvested have increased by nearly a million since 1991 and are currently at their highest level ever.
Numbers of waterfowl harvested in Queensland has decreased to about a quarter of the number harvested in 1985, although the number has fluctuated considerably over the period.
The indicator requires populations and trends in abundance and distribution of harvested species. Only data on numbers harvested are available. No data that would give an indication as to whether harvesting is sustainable, for example, data on population trends, population structure or distribution of harvested species, appear to be available.
Data on trends in abundance and populations of harvested species would give some indication of whether harvesting is sustainable.
Other indicators for this issue:
- LD-10 Number of compounds from terrestrial sources at some stage of commercial development
- CO-07 Australian fisheries production - national tonnage and value of retained catch
- CO-09 Number of compounds from coastal and marine sources at some stage of commercial development
- CO-16 Status of Australian fisheries
- CO-17 Change in species and trophic structure of fish species caught
- CO-19 Estimated tonnage taken by illegal fishing; estimated number of illegal boats, estimated number of individuals of threatened species taken
- CO-20 Non-target effects: Area of seabeds trawled
- CO-21 Non-target effects: Number and/or weight taken as bycatch, and change since introduction of exclusion devices
- CO-32 Number of injuries to marine animals from marine debris
- CO-62 Estimated number of marine animals harvested by recreational fishers
- CO-63 Estimated number of marine animals harvested by indigenous fishers
- CO-65 Correlation between various human activities and introduction of coastal and marine species
- AAT-19 Annual catch in tonnes of marine species harvested in Australian Antarctic and sub-Antarctic waters - legal and illegal
- AAT-20 Fishing by-catch numbers and/or weight taken as bycatch
Plants and animals both farmed (agriculture) and wild are harvested from the land for human use. Data on these harvesting activities is needed to monitor their contribution to human life.
Other indicators for this issue:
- LD-08 Average tonnage and value of food produced per hectare of land under food production
- LD-09 Average tonnage and value of other (non-food) agricultural products per hectare of land under production
- HS-48 Material Flows in Human Settlements
- LD-19 Land use and land use change
- Kangaroo harvesting statistics
- Is Australian Wildlife Fair Game?
- The Australian Wildlife Management Society
The text appearing in the section entitled "What the data mean" and "Data Limitations" has been altered to reflect the view of the Department of the Environment and Water Resources that kangaroo population trend data are adequate to conclude that kangaroo harvesting is sustainable. Links have also been added to kangaroo population data by States.