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Shooters invited to remove park pests

30 May, 2012 01:19 PM
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LICENCED shooters will be allowed to cull pests in the State’s national parks, nature reserves and state conservation areas.

NSW Deputy Premier Andrew Stoner said feral animals were a scourge on farming, estimated to cost NSW agriculture $70 million a year.

“This is a sensible step that will give native fauna and our farmers better protection from feral animals,” Mr Stoner said.

“Farmers do it tough enough without also having feral animals destroying their crops and livestock.

“This will also help prevent feral animals from displacing native species through predation and competition, and from devastating threatened vegetation by grazing and trampling.”

Pigs, dogs, cats, goats, rabbits, fox, hare and deer would all be in the firing line in a limited number of areas under strict conditions, he said.

Under amendments to the Game and Feral Animal Control Act, the feral animal eradication program will be extended in 79 parks.

The amendments would expand eradication programs in around 10 per cent of the State’s national parks.

Anyone applying to cull in one of the designated areas would require written permission, have to be licensed by the Game Council, have undertaken adequate training, and comply with the access conditions established by the Minister for the Environment.

At least 24,000 feral pigs, dogs, goats, foxes, cats, rabbits and deer were destroyed in national parks in 2010-11 under existing cull policies.

Premier Barry O’Farrell said it was a logical extension of an existing policy.

Protections for native animals remain in force, with fines of up to $220,000 for harming a threatened species.

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READER COMMENTS

Rex
30/05/2012 7:01:43 PM, on The Land

Aready the greenies are talking up thier usual BS. They reckon shooters will introduce feral animals to shoot???? What a bunch of idiots the Greenies are, no brains and definately no sense.
Concerned
31/05/2012 9:29:11 AM, on The Land

Game Council NSW and shooters do very little for reducing pest animal populations (and little at reducing damage levels) and their focus is on sustainable harvesting of pests to fulfil their recreational hunting interests. They never want to totally eradicate a pest population from an area are this would reduce their future access. Farmers should be aware that pest populations are increasing following good rainfall, but shooting is only one method for pest management, and it contributes little unless integrated well with a larger baiting and trapping program. Shooting should be used LAST.
Andy
31/05/2012 2:16:49 PM, on The Land

You are correct, using only hunting & the same comm/rec hunters has minimal impact. Varying the groups used, after conducting some other control technique (baiting, trapping), is very effective, most hunters are very experienced & determined. The key is good management by the rangers, picking & choosing who has access & when. I’m confident this can work well as most rangers are passionate about the patches they look after & know the damage the feral animals cause. As long as they can trust the groups they work with & have control over the who, when & how’s it will be a great initiative.
frustrated
31/05/2012 5:22:04 PM, on The Land

Its hard enough stopping illegal pig chasers coming through reserves onto private property. Any responsible hunter can get permission to hunt of private property. The ones who need to shoot on public land are the dead-beats who have been kicked of everyones property. Ask farmers next to state forests how many beasts they've lost since " Conservation" hunting.
newbies
1/06/2012 6:15:23 AM, on The Land

shooting is free to the government who actually make moneyout of it. if the factswere read properly then people would know the truth, pisons cause lots of suffering and shooting is usually humane
Woodsman
1/06/2012 6:20:59 AM, on The Land

Hunted to Extinction, or extirpation of all outdoor cats in this case, is the ONLY method that is faster than a species can out-breed and out-adapt to. ESPECIALLY a man-made invasive-species like these cats that can breed 2-4X's faster than any naturally occurring cat species. Shoot on sight is the MOST effective method, but it always helps to supplement it with other means. I alone managed to get rid of hundreds of them on my own land, this was done with inexpensive .22s, and in less than 2 seasons of time. May you be as fortunate as I was. My land has been cat-free for over 2 years now.
Beaver
1/06/2012 11:20:04 AM, on The Land

Besides a blatant lie from the O'farrel government, the minister wants NPWS to oversee the program. I seems to me that this would be a full time job and NPWS are already scratching with budgets cut, positions not filled or deleted and really the parks are going downhill as a result - especially funding for feral animal control. They are doing what the government will allow them to do. Seems like another aspect of essential parks work to be contracted out to people who don't understand how parks work and are only self serving i.e hunters A cheap nasty deal.
Rational
1/06/2012 11:28:27 AM, on The Land

Recreational hunter has never proved to be an efficient or effective manner of controlling feral pests. The NSW Game Council's own figures in their 2010-11 annual report shows that on average hunters only kill 1 animal per hunting trip. This will never provide enough pressure on the populations to reduce the numbers. Of more concern to grazers is that only 0.5% of all animals shot by licensed hunters in NSW were wild dogs.
Ian Mott
1/06/2012 2:39:40 PM, on The Land

It seems the departmental brown shirts are going to do all they can to frustrate the policy. They just can't get their heads around the fact that any contribution is a useful one and the only correct response is "all of the above". Given that this policy is only to be implemented on 10% of the estate then the government has every right to sack any parks goon who refuses to carry out his duties. In fact, it sounds like a good way to find some budget cuts to me so perhaps it should be extended to more and more parks to flush out the eco-scum.
wilfred
1/06/2012 5:09:46 PM, on The Land

leave the dogs alone and cull the state government if they sell everything off whats the purpose of having 3 levels of government . Bring on local government and reduce our taxes .

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Because it is now in control of economic neanderthals and vandals, G Man.
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You are correct, VivKay. In Australia, Dr Fischer "attributed a declining rate of crop
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Well said VivKay. The world is no different to a farm - if you are over stocked your in