Mountain cattlemen say brumbies should stay
THE Mountain Cattlemen’s Association of Victoria (MCAV) has hit out at the State Government after news that 1200 brumbies will be re- homed or euthanised in the Alpine National Park, including all of those found on the Bogong High Plains.
Making the announcement earlier this month, Victoria’s Environment Minister, Lily D’Ambrosio, said the removal of feral horses would combat “severe damage” being done to High Country eco systems.
“Feral horses cannot be allowed to run rampant in the Alpine National Park — their hard hooves damage the precious environment and destroy the habitats of threatened species,” Ms D’Ambrosio said.
However, Mansfield-based president of the MCAV, Graeme Stoney, said the claims were at odds with the heritage of Victoria.
“The Bogong High Plains are vast and iconic,” he said.
“The small mob of brumbies that run on the plains - estimated at less than 100 - cause minimal impact to that vast area, and are a significant part of the heritage that makes the plains so special to visitors.
“The Bogong High Plains are one of the few places that the visiting public can gain a glimpse of the brumbies, an experience which is very exciting and rewarding even to hardened and experienced bush people.”
Mr Stoney said the MCAV supported reducing brumby numbers where there was a proven environmental impact.
“With any debate about public land, there should be a balance; and keeping the small mob on the plains should be part of that balanced management for cultural, heritage and tourism reasons,” Mr Stoney said.
“The MCAV has supported the need to reduce numbers of horses in other parts of the Alpine Park, such as near the NSW border where numbers are increasing to levels where there is impact.”
Last month, the New South Wales Government reversed their planned cull of brumbies after a public backlash.
The brumby control was to take place in the Kosciuszko National Park, where an estimated 6000 wild horses live, but was scrapped.
In a complete about-face, the government now plans to introduce the “brumby bill” to parliament – legally protecting the animals from future culling.
SAVE ME: The MCAV has hit out at the Victorian Government after plans were announced to completely remove all brumbies from the Bogong High Plains, along with a further 1100 in the Alpine National Park.