Protecting Wilderness and National Parks

Save Kosciuszko National Park! (too many horses = one degraded park)

The pro-horse lobby protesting today outside the NSW Parliament has grabbed the wrong end of the horse argument.  Opposing a drastic reduction in horse numbers is equivalent to being opposed to nature-based park management. 

National parks are set aside for conservation.  They are supposed to be permanent, public and protected.  Kosciuszko National Park should be managed for nature, but 6000 feral horses are degrading it and our visitor experience of it, Keith Muir director of the Colong Foundation for Wilderness said. 

“Kosciuszko National Park is part of our National Heritage.  The NPWS is obliged to protect it and its native species, especially those of international and national significance, Mr Muir said

“Under the proposed wild horse management plan the heritage values of this park must be conserved, protected, presented, transmitted to future generations and, where necessary, rehabilitated because that is what the NPWS is required to do by law.  .  The NPWS can’t allow thousands horses to degrade the Snowy Mountains,” said Mr Muir.

“The proposed wild horse management is based on evidence and fact.  It is not a vendetta.  The pro-horse lobby claims that the NPWS is not controlling other pest species or are picking on horses are wrong.  The NPWS controls pest species, and when a pest gets out of hand, then resources go toward reducing that threat to the natural environment, and that is what is happening under the horse management plan”, he said. 

“Kosciuszko National Park’s unique alpine and subalpine plants and animals have nowhere else to go.  The Pilot, once the best wilderness in the Snowy Mountains, is now degraded.  The 700,000 horses in Australia are not native animals and the park management must not become inverted, so that Kosciuszko National Park is degraded while large horse populations can flourish in it. 

“Kosciuszko National Park must be saved from the threat of feral horses,” Mr Muir said.

For more information contact: Keith Muir, (02) 9261 2400 (wk) or 0412 791 404 (mob)
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