Please send a direct letter to the NSW Deputy Premier to demand protection for all NSW Brumbies.
The current situation
During the Spring of 2019, National Parks and Wildlife Service (NPWS), undertook a KNP trapping program, despite assurances from the NSW State Government to protect the Kosciusko National Park (KNP) Brumbies under the NSW Kosciusko Wild Horse Act 2018. In total, 99 KNP Brumbies were removed – 67 stallions, 24 mares and 8 yearlings – and 68 were rehomed. A mare and colt were euthanised on welfare grounds, one stallion died whilst being held in trap yards due to a “suspected head injury”, and 28 were trucked to a knackery for a cruel and terrifying death.
NPWS have relied on the existing 2008 Kosciusko National Park Horse Management Plan, however, they have ignored required obligations, which stipulate under Section 19 5.4, “In this plan (2008) only injured, very ill, or animals which are endangering peoples safety will be euthanised.” NPWS has also completely disregarded the intent of the 2018 Act, and proposed new “Management Plan”.
The public was led to believe that NSW Brumbies would be protected and were justifiably outraged when cruel aerial culling of wild horses took place in December 2018, at the Singleton Army base. The public will similarly be angered to know that in complete disregard of government’s assurances, existing legislation, and obligations, NPWS have continued to run trapping programs in KNP resulting in the horrific death of NSW wild horses.
Brumbies need protection
The NSW State Government procrastinated for nearly two years before implementing the NSW Wild Horse Community Advisory Panel (CAP), which intended to provide input into the management of sustainable wild horse populations within KNP. The corresponding long-awaited new “Management Plan” has still not been placed on public exhibition, and there is a widespread general concern about the lack of progress to date. Significant concerns also persist about the lack of accurate and up to date population counts and reports which do not differentiate impacts caused by other introduced species, human encroachment and activity, including developments, or acknowledged the benefits of Brumbies. Brumbies are being targeted and used as a scapegoat and are paying the ultimate price with their lives.
Brumbies have lived in NSW for nearly 200 years, long before the creation of National Parks and other environmentally devastating developments such as Snowy Hydro 2. The Australian Brumby is a much loved iconic figure, immortalised in Elyne Mitchell’s Silver Brumby books, recorded in many poems, songs, artwork, and folklore. They are an integral part of our social history and hold important cultural and heritage value, recognising that today’s Brumbies have ancestral ties to horses who served in World War I and II.
All NSW wild horses, including the KNP Brumbies, deserve our respect and urgently need our protection. They do not deserve to die from a bullet, from injuries sustained while trapped in yards after being enticed by addictive food lures, or be separated from their family, denied their freedom, and trucked to a knackery for a terrifying and cruel slaughter. There are humane available alternatives, which are sustainable and balance the needs of native fauna, flora and the wider environment.
Please join us in asking the Hon. John Barilaro to act now. All options must be explored and all decisions about NSW wild horses must be made based on up to date, accurate, and scientific evidence, factoring in the social, cultural heritage significance of Brumbies, including their benefits to the wider environment, and the clear expectations of the public.