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Copeland slates 'wasteful' possum poisoning

Friday, 20 January 2006

Copeland slates 'wasteful' possum poisoning

United Future environment spokesman Gordon Copeland says the evidence is growing that New Zealand needs a comprehensive and well-planned national pest control policy, as is called for in United Future's confidence and supply agreement with the Labour-led government.

"A prime example is occurring right now at Sunset Beach, near Port Waikato, where Environment Waikato is carrying out a very expensive 1080 poison drop to get rid of possums in the area.

"That's an admirable objective," he says, "but an experienced local possum hunter, Wyn Hibberd, tells us he hunted the area last weekend and killed a grand total of 15 possums over the whole 2,000 hectares.

"If this sort of ill-directed spending is repeated up and down the country, New Zealand will see little control of pests at very great expense.

"We need a co-ordinated national pest control policy urgently," says Mr Copeland.

United Future's outdoor spokesman and former MP, Larry Baldock, who toured the area with Mr Hibberd today and saw very few signs of any possums, endorsed his remarks.


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