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Changes welcomed for big game animal management

15 April 2008


Changes welcomed for big game animal management

New Zealand Deerstalkers’ Association (NZDA) has welcomed the Minister of Conservation’s release of the Government appointed Game Animal Panel Report to the Minister of Conservation on “Managing the numbers of Deer Tahr, Chamois and wild Pigs”. The Panel recommended working towards greater involvement and inclusion of big game hunters in the Department of Conservation’s (DOC) management of these animals, with three recommendations to this end.

“I am heartened by the very great public response of over 4000 responses to the public consultation” NZDA President Alec McIver said. “This highlights how much of an issue with the public the present DOC management of these animals solely as pests is. The also controversial recent review of aerial 1080, attracted 1400 responses, only a third as many as this.”

“Also heartening was that a large majority of respondents, by four to one, saw these animals as a recreational, wild food or other type of resource, rather than as pests “ Mr McIver said. “ Present Department of Conservation control in contrast considers them solely as pests. This is certainly a sign to Government both of the value of holding this consultation, and of taking steps to address this major concern of submitters. Big game animal numbers can now be readily controlled. DOC sees them as a much lesser threat than introduced pests that attack rare and endangered bird species” Mr McIver said.

“The Panel has sidestepped the central issue of recognising these species for their recreational, wild food and other resource values” Mr McIver said. “But its three proposals for greater and more effective engagement of hunters and DOC have strong merit, and NZDA urges the Minister to proceed rapidly with implementing them.”


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