Poison use protest
Highlands property gets nod for 1080
ANIMAL welfare activists and the Shooters, Fishers and Farmers Party are standing united to put a stop to the “abhorrent” killing of Tasmanian wildlife through a governmentapproved poisoning scheme.
A property at Bronte Park in the Central Highlands was this week laid with sodium fluoroacetate, commonly known as 1080, to control pests.
The use of 1080 poisoning is banned in most countries. It was first used in Australia in the 1950s, and as a rabbit poison in Tasmania.
The measure of animal control, whereby property owners must gain government ap- proval before undertaking a poisoning program, has come under fire by animal protection groups and the Shooters, Fishers and Farmers Party, which says the State Government should put a stop to it.
“Animals affected by this inhumane poison endure vomiting, seizures and agonising deaths,” said Shooters, Fishers and Farmers Party deputy leader Ken Orr.
“[This] poison has no place in Tasmania, not when we have an army of qualified and capable volunteers to assist land owners with effective animal control.
“This government has no shame and consideration for animal welfare and must be held to account.”
A Department of Primary Industries, Parks, Water and Environment spokesman said sometimes property owners had no option other than 1080.
“There are a range of measures available to landholders to manage the impacts of browsing animal pressure such as fencing and shooting,” the spokesman said.
“However, it is recognised that there are circumstances where these options are not viable or effective.
“An on-site government inspection was undertaken at the Central Highlands property to assess the application which found there was an unacceptable risk to a crop or pasture and the use of 1080 did not pose an unacceptable risk to a population of non-target species.
“It also found that alternative control measures have been considered and implemented as far as practicable and judged to be ineffective.”
It’s the second time this year the Government has been forced to defend the use of 1080 in the Central Highlands after a property near Penstock Lagoon used the poison in May.
Animal welfare activist Kristy Alger said the continued deployment of 1080 in the state was getting out of hand.
“It’s very scary that rather than having fewer permits for 1080, we’re actually seeing more in Tasmania,” she said.
“It is horrific poison to be utilising and the government needs to be scaling it back. With the amount of work being done to save our Tasmanian devil population, to see the potential for them to be killed off [by] 1080 doesn’t bear sense.”