The Australian National Code of Practice advises that hunters shoot kangaroos through the brain to ensure immediate death, but because heads are removed before reaching the processor, there is no accurate confirmation. Low visibility at night often results in kangaroos being shot in their body or neck and left to die slowly and painfully or destroyed, since their pelt has been blemished by the body shot. The killing is almost entirely unmonitored. Last week, 70 scientists, academics, and public figures from Australia signed a letter identifying serious conservation, animal welfare, and human health concerns with the slaughter of kangaroos which, they said, is "putting at high risk both kangaroo populations and people's health, and causes profound suffering to the kangaroos, particularly the dependent young."
Baby kangaroos, known as joeys, fall victim to the inhumane hunting practices at an alarming rate. When any female kangaroo with a joey in her pouch or nearby is killed, the hunter is advised to bludgeon the joey to death or decapitate it. In 2014, hunters killed more than 130,000 females, resulting in the orphaning and killing of tens of thousands of joeys.