Bella and Teina
Lynmore Primary School
18th September 2009,
RE: Kaimanawa Horses are a pest
Dear Minister if Conservation,
I am writing to you today because I want you to give me some money so I can help get rid of the Kaimanawa wild horses.
A large number of Kaimanawa horses live in the ranges, in teh Central Northland of New Zealand. This area is a largely uninhabited country, south of Lake Taupo and east of the desert road. Its slopes are part ofthe North Island Volcanic Plateau. This area is very precious and fragile and is not able to cope with excessive grazing by the horses.
The large number of horses took a heavy on the environment through over grazing and trampling. Fragile and unique wetlands, tussock grasslands and many special plants are under threat from the horses. Much of the area where the horses live has not been farmed for decades or ever converted to pasture. It contains many special native plant communities that have now been lost elsewhere.
The area where the horses graze is geographically and climatically unusual. As a result many special plants including at least 16 species which are threatened and 11 other species are known only in this wild horse range in the north island. One such plant was discovered in 1996 and others might yet be waiting to be found.
The Department of Conservation (D.o.C) also carried out research that showed that the animals were not a distinct breed of horse, but were the result of many genetic influences. There was no genetic evidence of special relationships with breeds such as the Exmoore pony in England, as had previously been suggested. D.o.C currently holds an annual muster of Kaminawa horses to maintain numbers in the wild at a manageable level. I think that this is not enough and the horses need to be removed entirely.
Unlike the horses this fragile alpine environment is unique to New Zealand, being found nowhere else in the world. We need to get the horses out of this environment as soon as possible so that this environment can be protected for ever more.
Bella and Teina