Environmental issues

Pests and weeds

Royal National Park and other reserves deer management plan

Rusa deer from Indonesia were introduced into Royal National Park approximately 100 years ago. The current population is having significant impacts on the park. The bushfire in late December 2001 burnt more than 50 per cent of the park and this has accentuated the impacts and increased the urgency of the need to reduce deer numbers.

In 2002 a deer management plan was prepared by the Royal National Park Deer Working Group in conjunction with the National Parks and Wildlife Service (NPWS). Membership of the working group includes representatives from conservation organisations, animal welfare organisations, local government and the NPWS.

The NPWS has committed to a further three years of deer control in Royal National Park, under a revised management plan. The purpose of the plan is to manage deer populations in the park to minimise adverse impacts on biodiversity and minimise socio-economic impacts on the community.

Under the plan, the number of deer will be reduced by a ground-shooting program undertaken by appropriately trained shooters. The proposed shooting program will follow an approved animal welfare and safety protocol and is supported by all members of the Deer Working Group. Animal welfare organisations will audit the shooting program.

The 2002 plan was adopted after extensive community consultation. More than 200 people attended workshops at Audley and Corrimal to discuss the plan. The NPWS also received public submissions, which were considered in the finalisation of the plan.

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Page last updated: 30 January 2015