From victims to companions: reconciling wildlife and agriculture in rural spaces

Paxton, Gillian (2021) From victims to companions: reconciling wildlife and agriculture in rural spaces. In: Harkness, Alistair, and White, Rob, (eds.) Crossroads of Rural Crime: representations and realities of transgression in the Australian countryside. Emerald Publishing Limited, Bingley, United Kingdom, pp. 109-119.

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Managing the inevitable conflicts that occur as humans and wildlife increasingly cross paths is a pressing concern for conservation in the Anthropocene. The focus of this chapter is on a high-profile case of wildlife persecution in rural Australia, which saw a farmhand successfully prosecuted for deliberately poisoning 420 wedge-tailed eagles he believed to be a threat to the newborn lambs on the property where he worked. The chapter illustrates how this crime emerged at the intersection of three trajectories: the legacy of environmental change and colonial oppression in Australia; the sustained resistance to rural exclusion exhibited by some species of Australia native wildlife as they have adapted their livelihoods to the altered agricultural landscapes; and conservation doctrine that seeks to reverse the historical treatment of Australian wildlife by issuing it blanket protection from human interference. The complexities and interdependencies that have been created as wildlife have forged a future in rural space cannot be easily unravelled. The chapter argues that, alongside protection, more active forms of reconciliation between the trajectories of Australian agriculture and the trajectories of rural wildlife are required. It is only through experimenting with ways that pastoralists and wildlife might resolve disputes fairly and openly that more inclusive rural places become possible.

Item ID: 68145
Item Type: Book Chapter (Research - B1)
ISBN: 978-1-80043-645-9
Keywords: Wildlife; conservation crime; birds of prey; agricultural practices; reconciliation; rurality
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Copyright Information: © 2021 by Emerald Publishing Limited.
Date Deposited: 19 Aug 2021 02:52
FoR Codes: 44 HUMAN SOCIETY > 4402 Criminology > 440208 Environmental crime @ 60%
44 HUMAN SOCIETY > 4402 Criminology > 440214 Sociological studies of crime @ 40%
SEO Codes: 18 ENVIRONMENTAL MANAGEMENT > 1899 Other environmental management > 189999 Other environmental management not elsewhere classified @ 0%
23 LAW, POLITICS AND COMMUNITY SERVICES > 2304 Justice and the law > 230401 Civil justice @ 30%
13 CULTURE AND SOCIETY > 1303 Ethics > 130303 Environmental ethics @ 70%
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