Feral horse management

The management of feral horses is part of a wider vertebrate pest control program for Namadgi National Park that also includes pigs, wild dogs, foxes, rabbits and goats.

Namadgi National Park has been generally free of feral horses since 1987, however, since 2001 small groups of horses have been entering the Park from neighbouring areas of Kosciuszko National Park. Attempts to prevent these incursions into Namadgi using barrier fences have been unsuccessful. The presence of feral horses within Namadgi National Park is of particular concern because of their potential to damage sensitive sub-alpine wetlands and bogs, particularly those of the Cotter Catchment which provides the domestic water supply for Canberra and Queanbeyan. The sphagnum bogs also provide habitat for the rare and endangered Northern Corroboree Frog. Although only a few (15 – 20) horses are involved they have already caused damage to sub-alpine vegetation. If the current small feral horse population in Namadgi is permitted to grow and expand its range there will be increasing damage to sensitive ecosystems with deleterious impacts on biodiversity and the water catchment.

The Namadgi National Park Feral Horse Management Plan (2007) was developed to guide control programs aimed at reducing the impact of feral horses in the Park.