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This paper examines the widespread phenomenon of grumpiness among Australia's ecologists and members of related disciplines. It argues that their disillusionment is a result of consistent first-hand experience of irretrievable, but preventable, losses of species and ecosystems. It also contends that the lessons of their professional experience continue to go unheeded by the broader community, and that this increases their feeling of disillusionment. The paper examines the Australian Bureau of Statistics' report Measures of Australia's Progress in the context of the threats facing Australian fauna and the existing state of public knowledge concerning these threats. It then analyses the results of the Who Cares About the Environment? report, conducted by the Office of Environment and Heritage, New South Wales (2012). It concludes that these reports illustrate a disturbing lack of knowledge and awareness of our fauna among the Australian public, as well as the threats facing biodiversity.

Australian Academy of Science. 2010. Australian Academy of Science's role in the sustainable population debate [Online]. Available at: http://science.org.au/reports/sustainable-population.html [Last accessed 19/04/2013].
Australian Bureau of Statistics. 2010. Measures of Australia's Progress 2010 [Online]. Available at: http://www.abs.gov.au/ausstats/abs@.nsf/mf/1370.0 [Last accessed 15/04/2013].
Banks, P., Lunney, D. and Dickman, C.R. (eds). 2012. Science Under Siege: zoology under threat. Royal Zoological Society of NSW, Mosman, NSW, Australia. Available as open access on rzsnsw.metapress.com
Beattie, A. 2013. The Contemporary View of Biodiversity: Bad Science and Bad Policy. Pp 17-23 in Grumpy scientists: the ecological conscience of a nation, edited by D. Lunney, P. Hutchings and H. F. Recher. Royal Zoological Society of NSW, Mosman, NSW, Australia.
Bradstock, R., Auld, T.D., Keith, D.A., Kingsford, R.T., Lunney, D. and Sivertsen, D.P. (eds). 1995. Conserving Biodiversity: threats and solutions. Surrey Beatty and Sons and National Parks and Wildlife Service. Chipping Norton, NSW, Australia.
Butler, C.D. 2003. Population and Environment in Australia: 2003. A report commissioned by the Population and Environment Research Fund Committee of the Australian Academy of Science. Gordon St., Canberra, ACT, Australia. http://science.org.au/events/fenner/fenner2004/documents/populationandenvironment.pdf [Last accessed 11/03/2013].
Commonwealth of Australia. 2011. State of the Environment 2011 [Online]. Available at: http://www.environment.gov.au/soe/2011/index.html [Last accessed 10/04/2013].
Crowe, D. 2013. Green tape ‘risks choking $200bn in export projects’. The Australian (March 25) [Online]. Available at: http://www.theaustralian.com.au/national-affairs/climate/green-tape-risks-choking-200bn-in-export-projects/story-e6frg6xf-1226605043926 [Last accessed 12/06/2013].
CSE Resource Futures. 2006. Future Dilemmas: Options to 2050 for Australia's population, technology, resources and environment [Online]. Available at: http://www.cse.csiro.au/research/futuredilemmas/ [Last accessed 22/05/2013].
DECC. 2009. Annual Visits to PWG Managed Parks in New South Wales - Final Report [Online]. Available at: http://www.environment.nsw.gov.au/resources/research/NationalParkVisitsNSW.pdf [Last accessed 21/05/2013].
EPA. 2012. NSW State of the Environment 2012. NSW Environment Protection Authority, Goulburn Street, Sydney NSW, Australia. Available online at: http://www.environment.nsw.gov.au/soe/soe2012/index.htm [Last accessed 21/04/2013].
Ehrlich, P. R. 2013. The decoupling of human and natural systems makes me very grumpy. Pp 9-13 in Grumpy scientists: the ecological conscience of a nation, edited by D. Lunney, P. Hutchings and H. F. Recher. Royal Zoological Society of NSW, Mosman, NSW, Australia.
Ehrlich, P.R. and Ehrlich, A.H. 1970. Population, resources and environment. Issues in human ecology. W.H. Freeman and Co., San Francisco, USA.
Foran, B., and Poldy, F. 2002. Future Dilemmas: Options to 2050 for Australia's population, technology, resources and environment. CSIRO Resource Futures Working Paper 02/01, CSIRO Sustainable Ecosystems [Online]. Available at: http://www.cse.csiro.au/futuredilemmas [Last accessed 19/03/2013].
Grenville, K. 2013. A rare window into the past is the key to what we are now. The Sydney Morning Herald (11 March) [Online]. Available at: http://www.smh.com.au/comment/a-rare-window-into-the-past-is-the-key-to-what-we-are-now-20130310-2ftwg.html [Last accessed 19/04/2013].
Hutchings, P. 2012a. Death of life sciences: a personal view. Australian Zoologist 36:242-46.
Hutchings, P. 2012b. The chill winds of climate change freeze funding for biodiversity's critical infrastructure-a personal view. Pp. 9-12 in Science under Siege: zoology under threat, edited by P. Banks, D. Lunney, and C. Dickman. Royal Zoological Society of NSW, Mosman, NSW, Australia. Available as open access on rzsnsw.metapress.com
Hutchings, P. 2013. Why are taxonomists often regarded as second class citizens? a misclassification that threatens the basic infrastructure of biodiversity. Pp 26-30 in Grumpy scientists: the ecological conscience of a nation, edited by D. Lunney, P. Hutchings and H. F. Recher. Royal Zoological Society of NSW, Mosman, NSW, Australia.
IUCN. 2012. Priority Area 1: Protected areas …. conserving nature [Online]. Available at: http://www.iucn.org/about/work/programmes/gpap_home/gpap_biodiversity/ [Last accessed 10/04/2013].
Kingsford, R. 2013. Australia's biodiversity conservation crisis-does anyone care? Pp 31-38 in Grumpy scientists: the ecological conscience of a nation, edited by D. Lunney, P. Hutchings and H. F. Recher. Royal Zoological Society of NSW, Mosman, NSW, Australia.
Krebs, C.J. 2012. What good is a CSIRO division of wildlife anyway? Pp. 5-8 in Science under Siege: zoology under threat, edited by P. Banks, D. Lunney, and C. Dickman. Royal Zoological Society of NSW, Mosman, NSW, Australia. Available as open access on rzsnsw.metapress.com
Lindenmayer, D. 2007. On borrowed time: Australia's environmental crisis and what we must do about it. Penguin, Camberwell, Victoria, Australia.
Lunney, D. 2003. Thoughts on good writing and the recent CSIRO Report Future Dilemmas. Australian Zoologist 32: 203-6.
Lunney, D. 2012a. Wildlife management and the debate on the ethical use of animals. I. Decisions in a wildlife management agency. Pacific Conservation Biology 18: 5-21.
Lunney, D. 2012b. Wildlife management and the debate on the ethical use of animals. II. A challenge to the animal protection movement. Pacific Conservation Biology 18: 81-99.
Lunney, D., Pressey, B., Archer, M., Hand, S., Godthelp, H. and Curtin, A. 1997. Integrating ecology and economics: illustrating the need to resolve the conflicts of space and time. Ecological Economics 23: 135-42.
Lunney, D., Eby, P., Hutchings, P. and Burgin. S. (eds). 2007a. Pest or Guest. The zoology of overabundance. Royal Zoological Society of NSW, Mosman, NSW, Australia.
Lunney, D., Eby, P., Hutchings, P. and Burgin. S. 2007b. Pest or Guest: the cultural context of the zoology of overabundance. Pp. 258-269 in Pest or Guest. The zoology of overabundance, edited by D. Lunney, P. Eby, P. Hutchings and S. Burgin. Royal Zoological Society of NSW, Mosman, NSW, Australia.
Lunney, D. and Hutchings, P. (eds). 2012. Wildlife and Climate Change: towards robust conservation strategies for Australian fauna. Royal Zoological Society of NSW, Mosman, NSW, Australia. Available as open access on rzsnsw.metapress.com.
OEH. 2013. Who Cares about the Environment in 2012? Office of Environment and Heritage, Department of Premier and Cabinet, Goulburn Street, Sydney NSW, Australia. Available online at: http://www.environment.nsw.gov.au/resources/community/130078WC12Rpt.pdf [Last accessed 21/04/2013].
Millennium Ecosystem Assessment. 2005. Ecosystems and human well-being: biodiversity synthesis. World of resources institute, Washington DC. USA.
Moncrieff, M. 2012. Better lives for people but nature under a cloud. The Sydney Morning Herald (13-14 October): 1.
Natural Capital Committee. 2013a. Natural Capital Committee [Online]. Available at: http://www.defra.gov.uk/naturalcapitalcommittee/ [Last accessed 21/05/2013].
Natural Capital Committee. 2013b. The State of Natural Capital: Towards a framework for measurement and valuation [Online]. Available at: http://www.defra.gov.uk/naturalcapitalcommittee/files/State-of-Natural-Capital-Report-2013.pdf [Last accessed 21/05/2013].
Phillips, N. 2013. Extinct frog hops back into our gene pool. The Sydney Morning Herald (16-17 March): 1.
Pressey, R. L. 1994. Ad Hoc Reservations: Forward or Backward Steps in Developing Representative Reserve Systems? Conservation Biology 8(3): 662-668.
Pressey, R. L., Whish, G. L., Barrett, T. W., and Watts, M. E. 2002. Effectiveness of protected areas in north-eastern New South Wales: recent trends in six measures. Biological Conservation 106: 57-69.
Raupach, M., McMichael, T., Finnigan, J., Manderson, L. and Walker, B. (eds). 2012. Negotiating our future: 2050 Living scenarios for Australia. Australian Academy of Science. Gordon St., Canberra, ACT, Australia. http://science.org.au/publications/research-reports-and-policy.html [Last accessed 11/03/2013].
Recher, H. F. 2012. Climate change and the social responsibility of scientists: a reaction to Lunney and Hutchings. Pp. 202-207 in Wildlife and Climate Changes: Towards Robust Conservation Strategies for Australian Fauna, edited by D. Lunney and P. Hutchings. Mosman: Royal Zoological Society of New South Wales.
Recher, H. F. 2013. What makes this old scientist grumpy. Pp 1-8 in Grumpy scientists: the ecological conscience of a nation, edited by D. Lunney, P. Hutchings and H. F. Recher. Royal Zoological Society of NSW, Mosman, NSW, Australia.
Recher, H. F., Lunney, D., and Dunn, I. (eds). 1986. A Natural Legacy. Ecology in Australia. Pergamon Press, Rushcutters Bay, NSW, Australia.
Recher, H. F., and Pyke, G. 2012. A History of Environmental Ornithology at the Australian Museum. Pp. 395-425 in Contributions to the History of Australian Ornithology. Vol. 2, edited by W. E. Davis, Jnr., H. F. Recher, and W. E. Boles. Memoirs of the Nuttall Ornithological Club, No. 18.
Richards, J. 2013. Life at 100. It only gets better. The Sydney Morning Herald (7 March) [Online]. Available at: http://www.smh.com.au/lifestyle/life-at-100-it-only-gets-better-20130301-2fbct.html [Last accessed 10/04/2013].
Roads & Maritime Services NSW. 2013. An historic location [Online]. Available at: http://www.rta.nsw.gov.au/roadprojects/projects/sydney_region/western_sydney/windsor_bridge/an_historic_location/index.html [Last accessed 22/03/2013].
Schulz, M. and Ransom, L. 2010. Rapid fauna habitat assessment of the Sydney metropolitan catchment area. Pp. 371-401 in The natural history of Sydney, edited by D. Lunney, P. Hutchings and D. Hochuli. Royal Zoological Society of NSW, Mosman, NSW, Australia.
Seeney, J. 2013. Millions wasted on more green tape [Online]. Available at: http://statements.qld.gov.au/Statement/2013/5/15/millions-wasted-on-more-green-tape [Last accessed 12/06/2013].
Sen, A. 1999. Commodities and capabilities. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
Smith, D. 2011. Dick Smith on progress: transcript [Online]. Available at: http://blog.abs.gov.au/Blog/mapblog2010.nsf/dx/dick-smith-on-progress-transcript.htm [Last accessed 10/04/2013].
SMH. 2013. We're doing so well yet we keep whingeing. The Sydney Morning Herald (9 March) [Online]. Available at: http://www.smh.com.au/opinion/editorial/were-doing-so-well-yet-we-keep-whingeing-20130308-2fr06.html [Last accessed 10/04/2013].
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References

Australian Academy of Science. 2010. Australian Academy of Science's role in the sustainable population debate [Online]. Available at: http://science.org.au/reports/sustainable-population.html [Last accessed 19/04/2013].
Australian Bureau of Statistics. 2010. Measures of Australia's Progress 2010 [Online]. Available at: http://www.abs.gov.au/ausstats/abs@.nsf/mf/1370.0 [Last accessed 15/04/2013].
Banks, P., Lunney, D. and Dickman, C.R. (eds). 2012. Science Under Siege: zoology under threat. Royal Zoological Society of NSW, Mosman, NSW, Australia. Available as open access on rzsnsw.metapress.com
Beattie, A. 2013. The Contemporary View of Biodiversity: Bad Science and Bad Policy. Pp 17-23 in Grumpy scientists: the ecological conscience of a nation, edited by D. Lunney, P. Hutchings and H. F. Recher. Royal Zoological Society of NSW, Mosman, NSW, Australia.
Bradstock, R., Auld, T.D., Keith, D.A., Kingsford, R.T., Lunney, D. and Sivertsen, D.P. (eds). 1995. Conserving Biodiversity: threats and solutions. Surrey Beatty and Sons and National Parks and Wildlife Service. Chipping Norton, NSW, Australia.
Butler, C.D. 2003. Population and Environment in Australia: 2003. A report commissioned by the Population and Environment Research Fund Committee of the Australian Academy of Science. Gordon St., Canberra, ACT, Australia. http://science.org.au/events/fenner/fenner2004/documents/populationandenvironment.pdf [Last accessed 11/03/2013].
Commonwealth of Australia. 2011. State of the Environment 2011 [Online]. Available at: http://www.environment.gov.au/soe/2011/index.html [Last accessed 10/04/2013].
Crowe, D. 2013. Green tape ‘risks choking $200bn in export projects’. The Australian (March 25) [Online]. Available at: http://www.theaustralian.com.au/national-affairs/climate/green-tape-risks-choking-200bn-in-export-projects/story-e6frg6xf-1226605043926 [Last accessed 12/06/2013].
CSE Resource Futures. 2006. Future Dilemmas: Options to 2050 for Australia's population, technology, resources and environment [Online]. Available at: http://www.cse.csiro.au/research/futuredilemmas/ [Last accessed 22/05/2013].
DECC. 2009. Annual Visits to PWG Managed Parks in New South Wales - Final Report [Online]. Available at: http://www.environment.nsw.gov.au/resources/research/NationalParkVisitsNSW.pdf [Last accessed 21/05/2013].
EPA. 2012. NSW State of the Environment 2012. NSW Environment Protection Authority, Goulburn Street, Sydney NSW, Australia. Available online at: http://www.environment.nsw.gov.au/soe/soe2012/index.htm [Last accessed 21/04/2013].
Ehrlich, P. R. 2013. The decoupling of human and natural systems makes me very grumpy. Pp 9-13 in Grumpy scientists: the ecological conscience of a nation, edited by D. Lunney, P. Hutchings and H. F. Recher. Royal Zoological Society of NSW, Mosman, NSW, Australia.
Ehrlich, P.R. and Ehrlich, A.H. 1970. Population, resources and environment. Issues in human ecology. W.H. Freeman and Co., San Francisco, USA.
Foran, B., and Poldy, F. 2002. Future Dilemmas: Options to 2050 for Australia's population, technology, resources and environment. CSIRO Resource Futures Working Paper 02/01, CSIRO Sustainable Ecosystems [Online]. Available at: http://www.cse.csiro.au/futuredilemmas [Last accessed 19/03/2013].
Grenville, K. 2013. A rare window into the past is the key to what we are now. The Sydney Morning Herald (11 March) [Online]. Available at: http://www.smh.com.au/comment/a-rare-window-into-the-past-is-the-key-to-what-we-are-now-20130310-2ftwg.html [Last accessed 19/04/2013].
Hutchings, P. 2012a. Death of life sciences: a personal view. Australian Zoologist 36:242-46.
Hutchings, P. 2012b. The chill winds of climate change freeze funding for biodiversity's critical infrastructure-a personal view. Pp. 9-12 in Science under Siege: zoology under threat, edited by P. Banks, D. Lunney, and C. Dickman. Royal Zoological Society of NSW, Mosman, NSW, Australia. Available as open access on rzsnsw.metapress.com
Hutchings, P. 2013. Why are taxonomists often regarded as second class citizens? a misclassification that threatens the basic infrastructure of biodiversity. Pp 26-30 in Grumpy scientists: the ecological conscience of a nation, edited by D. Lunney, P. Hutchings and H. F. Recher. Royal Zoological Society of NSW, Mosman, NSW, Australia.
IUCN. 2012. Priority Area 1: Protected areas …. conserving nature [Online]. Available at: http://www.iucn.org/about/work/programmes/gpap_home/gpap_biodiversity/ [Last accessed 10/04/2013].
Kingsford, R. 2013. Australia's biodiversity conservation crisis-does anyone care? Pp 31-38 in Grumpy scientists: the ecological conscience of a nation, edited by D. Lunney, P. Hutchings and H. F. Recher. Royal Zoological Society of NSW, Mosman, NSW, Australia.
Krebs, C.J. 2012. What good is a CSIRO division of wildlife anyway? Pp. 5-8 in Science under Siege: zoology under threat, edited by P. Banks, D. Lunney, and C. Dickman. Royal Zoological Society of NSW, Mosman, NSW, Australia. Available as open access on rzsnsw.metapress.com
Lindenmayer, D. 2007. On borrowed time: Australia's environmental crisis and what we must do about it. Penguin, Camberwell, Victoria, Australia.
Lunney, D. 2003. Thoughts on good writing and the recent CSIRO Report Future Dilemmas. Australian Zoologist 32: 203-6.
Lunney, D. 2012a. Wildlife management and the debate on the ethical use of animals. I. Decisions in a wildlife management agency. Pacific Conservation Biology 18: 5-21.
Lunney, D. 2012b. Wildlife management and the debate on the ethical use of animals. II. A challenge to the animal protection movement. Pacific Conservation Biology 18: 81-99.
Lunney, D., Pressey, B., Archer, M., Hand, S., Godthelp, H. and Curtin, A. 1997. Integrating ecology and economics: illustrating the need to resolve the conflicts of space and time. Ecological Economics 23: 135-42.
Lunney, D., Eby, P., Hutchings, P. and Burgin. S. (eds). 2007a. Pest or Guest. The zoology of overabundance. Royal Zoological Society of NSW, Mosman, NSW, Australia.
Lunney, D., Eby, P., Hutchings, P. and Burgin. S. 2007b. Pest or Guest: the cultural context of the zoology of overabundance. Pp. 258-269 in Pest or Guest. The zoology of overabundance, edited by D. Lunney, P. Eby, P. Hutchings and S. Burgin. Royal Zoological Society of NSW, Mosman, NSW, Australia.
Lunney, D. and Hutchings, P. (eds). 2012. Wildlife and Climate Change: towards robust conservation strategies for Australian fauna. Royal Zoological Society of NSW, Mosman, NSW, Australia. Available as open access on rzsnsw.metapress.com.
OEH. 2013. Who Cares about the Environment in 2012? Office of Environment and Heritage, Department of Premier and Cabinet, Goulburn Street, Sydney NSW, Australia. Available online at: http://www.environment.nsw.gov.au/resources/community/130078WC12Rpt.pdf [Last accessed 21/04/2013].
Millennium Ecosystem Assessment. 2005. Ecosystems and human well-being: biodiversity synthesis. World of resources institute, Washington DC. USA.
Moncrieff, M. 2012. Better lives for people but nature under a cloud. The Sydney Morning Herald (13-14 October): 1.
Natural Capital Committee. 2013a. Natural Capital Committee [Online]. Available at: http://www.defra.gov.uk/naturalcapitalcommittee/ [Last accessed 21/05/2013].
Natural Capital Committee. 2013b. The State of Natural Capital: Towards a framework for measurement and valuation [Online]. Available at: http://www.defra.gov.uk/naturalcapitalcommittee/files/State-of-Natural-Capital-Report-2013.pdf [Last accessed 21/05/2013].
Phillips, N. 2013. Extinct frog hops back into our gene pool. The Sydney Morning Herald (16-17 March): 1.
Pressey, R. L. 1994. Ad Hoc Reservations: Forward or Backward Steps in Developing Representative Reserve Systems? Conservation Biology 8(3): 662-668.
Pressey, R. L., Whish, G. L., Barrett, T. W., and Watts, M. E. 2002. Effectiveness of protected areas in north-eastern New South Wales: recent trends in six measures. Biological Conservation 106: 57-69.
Raupach, M., McMichael, T., Finnigan, J., Manderson, L. and Walker, B. (eds). 2012. Negotiating our future: 2050 Living scenarios for Australia. Australian Academy of Science. Gordon St., Canberra, ACT, Australia. http://science.org.au/publications/research-reports-and-policy.html [Last accessed 11/03/2013].
Recher, H. F. 2012. Climate change and the social responsibility of scientists: a reaction to Lunney and Hutchings. Pp. 202-207 in Wildlife and Climate Changes: Towards Robust Conservation Strategies for Australian Fauna, edited by D. Lunney and P. Hutchings. Mosman: Royal Zoological Society of New South Wales.
Recher, H. F. 2013. What makes this old scientist grumpy. Pp 1-8 in Grumpy scientists: the ecological conscience of a nation, edited by D. Lunney, P. Hutchings and H. F. Recher. Royal Zoological Society of NSW, Mosman, NSW, Australia.
Recher, H. F., Lunney, D., and Dunn, I. (eds). 1986. A Natural Legacy. Ecology in Australia. Pergamon Press, Rushcutters Bay, NSW, Australia.
Recher, H. F., and Pyke, G. 2012. A History of Environmental Ornithology at the Australian Museum. Pp. 395-425 in Contributions to the History of Australian Ornithology. Vol. 2, edited by W. E. Davis, Jnr., H. F. Recher, and W. E. Boles. Memoirs of the Nuttall Ornithological Club, No. 18.
Richards, J. 2013. Life at 100. It only gets better. The Sydney Morning Herald (7 March) [Online]. Available at: http://www.smh.com.au/lifestyle/life-at-100-it-only-gets-better-20130301-2fbct.html [Last accessed 10/04/2013].
Roads & Maritime Services NSW. 2013. An historic location [Online]. Available at: http://www.rta.nsw.gov.au/roadprojects/projects/sydney_region/western_sydney/windsor_bridge/an_historic_location/index.html [Last accessed 22/03/2013].
Schulz, M. and Ransom, L. 2010. Rapid fauna habitat assessment of the Sydney metropolitan catchment area. Pp. 371-401 in The natural history of Sydney, edited by D. Lunney, P. Hutchings and D. Hochuli. Royal Zoological Society of NSW, Mosman, NSW, Australia.
Seeney, J. 2013. Millions wasted on more green tape [Online]. Available at: http://statements.qld.gov.au/Statement/2013/5/15/millions-wasted-on-more-green-tape [Last accessed 12/06/2013].
Sen, A. 1999. Commodities and capabilities. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
Smith, D. 2011. Dick Smith on progress: transcript [Online]. Available at: http://blog.abs.gov.au/Blog/mapblog2010.nsf/dx/dick-smith-on-progress-transcript.htm [Last accessed 10/04/2013].
SMH. 2013. We're doing so well yet we keep whingeing. The Sydney Morning Herald (9 March) [Online]. Available at: http://www.smh.com.au/opinion/editorial/were-doing-so-well-yet-we-keep-whingeing-20130308-2fr06.html [Last accessed 10/04/2013].
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