In the civilized world’s latest sordid military venture, the Australian military has revealed plans to forcibly sterilize and displace thousands of innocent kangaroos. The army originally planned to just shoot the beasts, whose grazing has eroded military bases and endangered other animals, until public uproar prompted a rethink. The new thinking: the best use of taxpayer resources would be to simply move the animals.

The kangaroos would be herded into a padded pen and sedated, then shot with a paintball gun to mark them as ready for transport. They would be released in a fenced area covered with shadecloth, the report by the Wildcare protection group for the Defence Department said.

At A$3,600 a head, the cost of moving each animal is more than a standard economy class return air ticket from Sydney to London on Qantas, the national carrier which features a kangaroo on its tail.