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Time to stop dogs killing kiwi

Time to stop dogs killing kiwi

The Department of Conservation is not doing enough to prevent kiwi from being killed by dogs on the loose in national parks in spite of legislation banning dogs from national parks.

"Forest and Bird is dismayed by ongoing kiwi deaths from dogs on the loose in national parks," said Forest and Bird President Dr. Gerry McSweeney.

At Forest and Bird's Annual Conference this weekend, representatives of Forest and Bird's 55 branches called on the Department of Conservation to enforce the Conservation and National Park's Acts and keep dogs out of national parks.

"Kiwi have been killed by dogs in Kahurangi, Te Urewera and Egmont National Parks in recent months. There was also a recent scare in Nelson Lakes National Park. Dogs are one of the few introduced animals that can kill an adult kiwi. One dog on the loose can kill tens or even hundred's of kiwi," Dr McSweeney said.

"At Waitangi State Forest in the North Island, in 1987, one dog killed around 500 of the 900 resident kiwi over a six week period," he said.

"There is no problem with muzzled dogs for special conservation projects or muzzled seeing eye dogs in national parks. The biggest problem is with pig hunting dogs and pets on the loose," he said.

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