Hunting is a tool to manage biodiversity 

In reply to Opposition leader John Robertson’s claims of “Dark day for our National Parks” (a story published in The Leader on Friday, December 28), the NSW Liberal government makes the following points:

* There has been game hunting in NSW state forests for nearly a decade. It was introduced by the previous Labor government. It has had a positive impact on feral numbers and has been conducted safely.

* The strategy of volunteer shooting of feral animals has been utilised by Victoria and South Australia for many years.

* It is restricted to 10 per cent of the State’s national parks and away from the metropolitan areas.

* The rules for game hunting are being developed by the NPWS, Game Council, Office of Environment and NSW Police.

Feral animals are causing enormous damage to our parks and scientists such as Professor  Tim Flannery believe they are responsible for most of the species extinction. (Game hunting) is another tool to manage our biodiversity.

Managed carefully, game hunting can be a win for the environment,all park users,staff, sporting shooters and the Government.

Scot MacDonald MLC

Guyra

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