The amended Game and Feral Animal Act provides enormous dangers for the future of the State's
national parks, according to a coalition of environment animal welfare organisations.
“The new legislation goes much further than the Government’s initial announcement – only 48 of our
799 national parks will be truly off limits to recreational hunting,” said Kevin Evans, CEO of the
National Parks Association.
“Shooters are now in control of our national parks. Under the new legislation, the authority of rangers
is diminished. They will have no power to prevent shooters acting illegally and will not even be able to
approach shooters hunting in accordance with a game hunting licence,” Mr Evans said.
“It's no wonder rangers fear for their own safety under these new arrangements,” said Pepe Clarke,
CEO of the Nature Conservation Council of NSW.
“Feral animals are not confined to national parks, they are a serious problem across the entire
continent and urgently need an integrated scientific approach to control using monitored, humane
methods,” Mr Clarke said.
Premier Barry O'Farrell’s claim that recreational hunting into our national parks is a logical extension
of an existing policy is just spin. NPWS staff are qualified to eradicate feral animals. With further
resources they could do this job even more effectively without the help of so called “conservation
hunters,” said Keith Muir, Director of the Colong for Wilderness.
“These are people who wanted the right to enter our national parks with high powered and automatic
weapons,” said Leanne Taylor, General Manager of WIRES.
“This law entrenches the shooters' model of “conservation” and pest management in national parks
when it is really just game hunting, green washed to introduce a lethal, gun-toting change of culture to
the state,” she said.
Amateurs don’t have the skills to eradicate pests and their motivation is to see pest numbers
increase, so that there is game to hunt,” said Belinda Fairbrother, Campaigns Manager for the
“When the Government is again threatened with not being able pass legislation in the Upper House,
the shooters demands will only increase,” said Jeff Angel Executive Director of the Total Environment
The decision to allow recreational hunting in national parks program may well haunt the Premier for
the rest of his political career. Encouraged by their success, the Shooters and Fishers Party will
increase their demands for more hunting opportunities and deregulation of gun ownership”, he said.
“The NSW government has today declared open season on the safety of park rangers, national park
staff, visitors, native wildlife and the environment,” said John Cahill, General Secretary of the Public
Service Association of NSW.