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2012 – 2016

© Copyright Office of Environment and Heritage on behalf of State of NSW

The Office of Environment and Heritage and the State of NSW are pleased to allow this material to be reproduced in whole or in part for educational and non-commercial use, provided the meaning is unchanged and its source, publisher and authorship are acknowledged.

Published by:

Office of Environment and Heritage

Department of Premier and Cabinet (NSW)

59-61 Goulburn Street, Sydney, NSW 2000

PO Box A290, Sydney South, NSW 1232

Phone: (02) 9995 5000 (switchboard)

Phone: 131 555 (environment information and publications requests)

Phone: 1300 361 967 (national parks, climate change and energy efficiency information, and publications requests)

Fax: (02) 9995 5999

TTY: (02) 9211 4723


Report pollution and environmental incidents

Environment Line: 131 555 (NSW only) or

See also

This document is also available on the Office of Environment and Heritage website at by following the links to ‘Kangaroo Management’.

This document should be cited as: Office of Environment and Heritage (NSW) 2011, New South Wales Commercial Kangaroo Harvest Management Plan 2012–2016, Office of Environment and Heritage, Department of Premier and Cabinet (NSW), Sydney.

ISBN 978 1 74293 442 6

OEH 2011/0975

December 2011




2.1. Commonwealth 7

2.2. New South Wales 7

Occupier’s Licence 11

Harvester’s Licence 12

Fauna Dealer’s Licence 13

Skin Dealer’s Licence 14

Import and Export Licence 14

Tags 15


3.1. Introduction 16

3.2. Biology and Ecology 16

3.3. Conservation Status 27

3.4. Threats, issues and assessment of impacts 27


4.1. Goal 31

4.2. Aims 32



Appendix A – Setting and applying harvest thresholds 54


Figure 1: Current New South Wales Kangaroo Management Zones 9

Figure 2: New South Wales commercial kangaroo licensing flow chart 10

Figure 3: Distribution of red kangaroo (Macropus rufus) 23

Figure 4: Distribution of eastern grey kangaroo (Macropus giganteus) 24

Figure 5: Distribution of western grey kangaroo (Macropus fuliginosus) 25

Figure 6: Distribution of wallaroo (Macropus robustus) 26

Figure 7: Histogram of a theoretical population of kangaroos. 55

Figure 8: A theoretical distribution after z-score transformation. 56

Figure 9: Example of setting harvest thresholds for red kangaroos in Zone 2. 57

Figure 10: 10,000 simulations for a population fluctuating over 20 years. 58

Figure 11. Simulated population as described for Figure 10. 59


Table 1: The New South Wales, Commonwealth, IUCN and CITES conservation status of the kangaroo species to which this plan relates 27

Table 2: Threats and issues pertinent to the conservation status of kangaroos 29

Table 3: Impacts of the commercial kangaroo harvest on other species, habitat and ecosystems 30


Carcase – the entire body (including the skin) of the kangaroo, excluding the head and viscera.

National Code of Practice for the Humane Shooting of Kangaroos and Wallabies for Commercial Purposes – the current nationally-endorsed Code, endorsed by the Natural Resource Management Ministerial Council in 2008. A reference to this Code will also apply to any subsequently nationally-endorsed codes.

Harvester – a person licensed under section 123 of the National Parks and Wildlife Act 1974 to harvest kangaroos for commercial purposes.

Chiller premise – a refrigerated facility used for the temporary storage of kangaroo carcases until collection and transport to a processing works.

Ecologically sustainable development – this plan employs the definition contained in the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999. In general this definition includes the precautionary principle; inter-generational equity; conservation of biological diversity and ecological integrity; and improved valuation of environmental factors.

Landholder – owner or occupier of specified lands.

Kangaroo – the kangaroo species that can be utilised in accordance with this management plan: the red kangaroo (Macropus rufus), western grey kangaroo (M. fuliginosus), eastern grey kangaroo (M. giganteus) and wallaroo (M. robustus erubescens and M. robustus robustus).

Note: All other definitions have the meaning prescribed in the National Parks and Wildlife Act 1974.


This management plan has been developed to satisfy the requirements of the Commonwealth's Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999 (EPBC Act) and to meet the legislative and other requirements of the NSW Government.

This management plan relates only to the commercial harvest of the following kangaroo species within NSW:

  • red kangaroo (Macropus rufus)

  • eastern grey kangaroo (Macropus giganteus)

  • western grey kangaroo (Macropus fuliginosus)

  • wallaroo (Macropus robustus, including both M. r. erubescens and M. r. robustus).

Where the term kangaroo is used within this document it refers to all of the aforementioned macropod species and subspecies.

This management plan is current for a maximum five-year period from 01 January 2012 to 31 December 2016.

In Australia the export of kangaroo products requires Commonwealth Government approval under the EPBC Act.

Under the NSW National Parks and Wildlife Act 1974 (the NPW Act), kangaroos are 'protected fauna' and the NSW Office of Environment and Heritage (OEH) is responsible for the 'protection and care of fauna'. The utilisation of kangaroos in NSW is regulated under the NPW Act and NSW National Parks and Wildlife Regulation 2009 (the Regulation) through the issue of various licences and tags.

This management plan does not provide the framework for the management of kangaroos within land dedicated or declared under Part 4 or Part 4A of the NPW Act and managed by OEH e.g. national parks and nature reserves. Kangaroos cannot be commercially taken in such conservation reserves, approximately 6.3% of the commercial harvest zones with a total area in excess of four million hectares.

This plan relates only to the commercial harvest of kangaroos within NSW. The non-commercial culling of kangaroos in NSW is not regulated by this plan. OEH regulates the non-commercial culling of kangaroos through the provisions of the NPW Act.

The primary goal of the management plan is to ensure that the commercial harvest of kangaroos is ecologically sustainable. This will be achieved through the application of the best available scientific knowledge and best practice management and monitoring of outcomes to ensure the viability of kangaroo populations is not compromised by any action undertaken in accordance with this plan.

This management plan incorporates an adaptive approach to management. Adaptive management is the systematic acquisition and application of reliable information to improve management over time. The adaptive management provisions of this plan facilitate the investigation of different strategies using scientifically rigorous experimentation to not only support appropriate adjustments to management practices, but to improve knowledge and inform future program reviews.

This plan will set the framework for the commercial harvest of kangaroos in order to provide for the management of kangaroo populations in accordance with the principles of ecologically sustainable development. Management in this context provides for the sustainable harvesting of kangaroos for products such as meat and leather to supply the Australian and international markets. Management also assists in balancing environmental, social and economic interests through the collaborative management of a sustainable resource.

This plan prohibits the taking of kangaroos for skins only.

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