Few animals in Australia evoke as much controversy as the dingo. There are debates about its cultural significance, what to call it, and its ecological and economic impacts. Resolving these debates requires consensus and agreement among researchers, land managers and other stakeholders. To aid this, I briefly summarise how far we have come in terms of increasing our knowledge of the ecology and behaviour of dingoes since the Royal Zoological Society of New South Wales held its first symposium on the dingo in 1999. I summarise the key debates that have arisen during this period, and then summarise some of the key recommendations made in papers that were written following the 2019 symposium. I finish with some suggestions for future dingo research, focusing on (1) how we can better understand and appropriately acknowledge the cultural significance of the dingo through research, broader consultations and appropriate representations on national, state and local pest planning committees, (2) produce taxonomic consensus through the appointment of an independent panel and future research using genome-wide DNA technology, and (3) resolving ecological and economic debates via reintroduction experiments in both conservation and managed agricultural landscapes. Without such efforts, I see a future for the dingo that continues to be steeped in controversy and debate.
Skip Nav Destination
Research Article| October 28 2021
Looking to the future: what next for the dingo?
School of Life and Environmental Sciences, University of Sydney, NSW 2006
Search for other works by this author on:
Australian Zoologist (2021) 41 (3): 643–653.
Thomas Newsome; Looking to the future: what next for the dingo?. Australian Zoologist 28 October 2021; 41 (3): 643–653. doi: https://doi.org/10.7882/AZ.2021.040
Download citation file:
Don't already have an account? Register
You could not be signed in. Please check your email address / username and password and try again.
Could not validate captcha. Please try again.
Sign in via your InstitutionSign in via your Institution
How do RZS NSW members access the full text papers?
If you are a current RZS NSW member (with publications), please access the full text of papers by visiting https://www.rzsnsw.org.au/member-centre/publications (you will be asked to log in to RZS NSW). Do not log in at the top of this current page for access.
The discovery of the remains of the last Tasmanian tiger (Thylacinus cynocephalus)
Robert N. Paddle<span class='al-author-delim'>, </span>Kathryn M. Medlock
Professional kangaroo population control leads to better animal welfare, conservation outcomes and avoids waste
George R Wilson<span class='al-author-delim'>, </span>Melanie Edwards
A Catalogue of the Thylacine captured on film
Stephen R. Sleightholme<span class='al-author-delim'>, </span>Cameron R. Campbell
Clutch size, incubation and nestling periods, and age estimation of nestling Red-tailed Black Cockatoos Calyptorhynchus banksii escondidus in the Western Australian wheatbelt
Denis A Saunders<span class='al-author-delim'>, </span>Ross B Cunningham