Midnight Oil frontman and environmental champion Peter Garrett has joined the fight to protect Kosciuszko National Park from increasing numbers of feral horses.
After an aerial and ground inspection of the park just before Christmas Mr Garrett said it was time for strong political action to reduce horse numbers in Kosciuszko.
He is urging people in NSW to sign a petition that calls for an urgent reduction in feral horse numbers in Kosciuszko and for work to begin that restores the fragile alpine slopes and wetlands trampled by feral horses.
“When we got off the helicopter this morning and I had a chance to look around and think about what I have seen I was just struck by firstly what a disaster is unfolding,” he said.
“I mean the science is pretty clear, these horses are damaging one of our most important natural and national assets and we’ve got to do something about it.”
The last official count put Kosciuszko’s feral horse population in the tens of thousands, with management of horse numbers at a standstill.
“If you want to see a healthy Kosciuszko National Park, if you want to see this incredibly beautiful area not destroyed any longer and the number of feral horses reduced significantly, you need to be a part of the Reclaim Kosci campaign and sign the petition,” Mr Garrett said.
“It’s really important that this horse protection law that came into the NSW parliament is repealed.
“It’s really important to get as many horses as we can off these grounds in a humane way so that the natural environment of Kosciuszko is restored and looked after.”
The petition calls on the NSW Parliament to:
- Act urgently to reduce feral horse numbers in Kosciuszko National Park by supporting a horse management plan that incorporates the best scientific and RSPCA advice.
- Fund a program to restore the catchments, slopes, wetlands and mountain streams impacted by feral horses in Kosciuszko National Park.
- Repeal the Kosciuszko Wild Horses Heritage Act 2018.
The Kosciuszko Wild Horses Heritage Act 2018 overrides the NSW National Parks and Wildlife Act and does not allow any effective population control of feral horses in Kosciuszko National Park.
Funding for Mr Garrett’s helicopter flight was supported by the Australian Wildlife Society.