Riders reminded to pick up after horses
The Tutukaka horse riding community might have to clean up its act after concerns were raised about horse droppings in a reserve.
In a Facebook post, Whangārei District Council Coastal Ward member Anna Murphy put on notice local horse riders who ride in the Ngunguru Reserve from the library through to Munro Place.
“I'm getting quite a few phone calls from people concerned about horse manure on the walkway and also damage to the grass,” she said. “Council staff have also questioned me about whether we should stop horse riders using the reserve.”
Murphy said she told the staff she didn't agree with that step but the community could spread the word instead.
“Can horse riders please pick up their horse poo or scrape it under a deserving bush out of the way of walkers and mowers. Also, it does get pretty wet down the Munro end of the walkway so if it's too muddy can horse riders please wait until the path has dried out and use the beach instead.”
Tutukaka Coast recreational horse rider Kristy Hughes shared the post to local horse riding pages.
She said the horse riding community wanted to be responsible and would take the notice as a reminder.
“Everyone will have seen the message and taken it on board.”
Hughes said where possible the riders try to keep off pathways where people walk so if the horse defecates it's not a problem.
“If we are on those pathways, we tend to kick it under a bush or come back and remove it.”
Others who responded to the post suggested putting the manure on gardens, with one person offering to collect it.
A spokesperson said the council had received some complaints about horses using this area but none specifically relating to droppings.
Under the council's Animal Control bylaw people must pick up after their dog or face a $300 fine, but there are no rules requiring riders to take away horses' droppings.
But the bylaw includes obligations for animal owners in general, including ensuring the animal does not cause a nuisance to other people or a risk to public health and safety.