Australia begins a controversial aerial slaughter of thousands of horses in a natural park

After two decades of being stopped, Australian authorities this Thursday began a program to cull thousands of wild horses to protect the fragile ecosystem of Kosciuszko National Park.

Oliver Thansan
Oliver Thansan
03 April 2024 Wednesday 16:23
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Australia begins a controversial aerial slaughter of thousands of horses in a natural park

After two decades of being stopped, Australian authorities this Thursday began a program to cull thousands of wild horses to protect the fragile ecosystem of Kosciuszko National Park. It will be done through sniper fire mounted on helicopters, a measure that has sparked controversy.

The National Parks and Wildlife Service of the state of New South Wales, whose capital is Sydney, indicated on its website the partial closure of Kosciuszko, which occupies some 6,900 square kilometers, "to carry out aerial shooting operations" between today and the October 4, during the southern autumn and winter.

The program, frozen for about twenty years, aims to reduce by 2027 to 3,000 the population of wild horses or "brumbies" that inhabit Kosciuszko, about 350 kilometers southwest of Sydney and where it is estimated that there are between 12,797 and 21,760 roaming equines. without control through the delicate landscapes.

"The killing of animals is not an easy decision, and it is not a decision that anyone wants to make, but it is absolutely necessary in the case of Kosciuszko National Park," the Green party representative in state parliament explained in a statement this Thursday. of New South Wales, Sue Higginson.

The Greens' environmental spokesperson also explained that last week she flew over Kosciuszko to investigate this aerial slaughter program and noted that "the number of horses and the magnitude of the damage were devastating."

Snipers hired by New South Wales authorities will also shoot deer, pigs and other wild animals, according to this controversial plan announced in October last year and which faced protests from animal rights groups who argue that the method is cruel. .

"Today the brumbie massacre begins again in the southern part of the snowy mountains," said Natalie Eggenberg, a retired resident on Facebook, highlighting that "Australia is the only country on the planet that allows horses to be shot from helicopters. "I don't need to tell you how I feel," he added.