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Down Under Hunting Plan Draws Fire

Here in the U.S., it's not unordinary for hunts to occur in state parks, wildlife management areas, and even in national parks. But in New South Wales, the mid-eastern state in Autralia that includes the Australian Capital Territory and Sydney, a plan to open recreational hunting in 79 national parks is causing some fair bit of controversy. 

A survey of park staff, as reported by the Devonport Times, revealed that just over half reported seeing signs of unauthorized hunting in parks. Worries about ranger safety, boundary identification, and lack of training as hunting guides on the part of rangers. Additionally, the survey revealed concern that hunting would have a detrimental affect on native species despite it's planned focus on non-native species and feral pests.

One ranger went so far as to declare that the plan to allow hunting was "not strategic nor targeted, and it provides incentives for hunters to introduce feral pests in a clandestine manner in order to allow them to pursue their sport.'' Perhaps the Aussies could look to the U.S. for models of controlled hunts on state-controlled lands.


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