Feral horses present a complex challenge for land managers. They are large introduced animals capable of damaging the Australian environment, a pastoral pest, a motor vehicle hazard, a meat resource and their control can significantly stir animal welfare concerns. They are also a cultural icon appearing on our ten dollar note. Horses first escaped domestication to become ‘feral’ 200 years ago, and they are now found in all mainland states and territories.
The Invasive Animals Cooperative Research Centre sponsored a national workshop, which brought together land managers, scientists and peak interest groups on the 3rd and 4th August in Canberra to discuss current approaches and issues around feral horse management in Australia.
Horses are well adapted to the highly variable Australian environment. There are thought to be in excess of 400 000 feral horses in Australia, mostly in arid and semi-arid regions. If left unmanaged they have the potential to increase at 20% per year. Management approaches vary across the country and include no intervention, humane lethal control, trapping and mustering.
|Secondary Author||Dawson, M.J., Lane, C. and Saunders, G.|
|Secondary title||National Feral Horse Management Workshop|
|Place published||Conference Location|
|Publisher||Invasive Animals Cooperative Research Centre|
|Region||Australia - national|