The Invasive Species Council, host of the Reclaim Kosci campaign, has issued the following statement in response to ABC TV Four Corners “Feral” episode that aired on Monday night:
“The NSW Government must get on with the task of rapidly removing feral horses from Kosciuszko and show zero tolerance for any attempts to sabotage control efforts,” Invasive Species Council CEO Andrew Cox said.
“After years of excuses, debates and delays we finally have a plan and now it’s time to get on with the job of removing out-of-control feral horses from Kosciuszko National Park.
“Any threats to disrupt park operations by brumby activists should be dealt with by the full force of the law.
“The consequences of failing to take action on feral horses are catastrophic for native ecosystems and wildlife, like the threatened broad-toothed mouse.
“We absolutely condemn the threatening rhetoric and behaviour used by some brumby activists in this debate and highlighted on Four Corners.
“Scientists, environmentalists and park managers have copped the brunt of the abuse from extremists who seem unable to accept the reality that feral horses need to be removed from the park,” Mr Cox said.
ISC Indigenous Ambassador and Snowy Mountains local Richard Swain also featured on the Four Corners program and has been subject to threats and abuse for speaking up to protect Kosciuszko.
“The next decade is critical for Kosciuszko National Park. If we don’t start getting horses out now it’s a death sentence for our native wildlife and for Country,” Mr Swain said.
“We need management based on science and evidence, not fairy tales and poems. Aerial and ground culling are both humane and effective ways of removing horses from the park.
“There is no time left for political cowardice. We need to see action and that means removing horses from the park and standing up to these threatening tactics,” Mr Swain said.