New Zealand First believes in the right of all New Zealanders to responsibly hunt, shoot, fish and enjoy the great outdoors and to take food from the bush, the rivers and the seas.
We support a sensible balance between the often overlapping requirements of outdoor recreational activities and those of industry, farming, conservation, tourism and the environment.
New Zealand First will:
- Guarantee free access to the conservation estate for all New Zealanders.
- Implement properly and adequately resourced ground operations, including trapping and bait stations as a matter of urgent priority as an alternative to aerial 1080 everywhere where ground operations are possible and at the same time immediately fund public good research into an alternative to aerial 1080 for use in areas where ground operations are not possible.
- Continue to support the Game Animal Council formed to oversee the management of specific major game species
- Ensure the maintenance of sensible firearms laws and provide active encouragement and support for the continued safe use of firearms in New Zealand.
- Ensure the sustainable management and preservation of rivers, waterways, wetlands, and wilderness areas for all users.
- Ensure the maintenance of sustainable fishing and guaranteed access for recreational fishers and the protection of existing game fish species.
- Oppose any licensing system for recreational saltwater fishers.
New Zealand First absolutely supports the need to protect our native wildlife from predation by introduced animals such as rats and stoats and we absolutely support the need to protect our cattle and deer herds from Bovine Tuberculosis (BTB).
However we are opposed to the continued use of aerially applied 1080 poison as a means of controlling target animal species with regards to these concerns.
1080 is an inhumane and indiscriminate poison which kills all air-breathing organisms. It is banned throughout most of the world. New Zealand currently accounts for some 90 per cent of all 1080 utilised globally.
1080 poses serious risks to the health of New Zealand’s environment and biodiversity, water quality, and international reputation, as well as posing a real danger to the health of people, stock and domestic animals in areas where it is applied.
New Zealand First does not accept the argument that there is no alternative to the use of aerial 1080 for the control of possums and predator pest animals such as rats and stoats in our bush and conservation lands.
We hold serious concerns over the number of native birds and insects which are killed both directly and indirectly through the use of 1080 intended to protect them and we are also concerned that populations of fast-bredding pest animals such as rats regenerate far more quickly than populations of slow-breeding native birds, in areas where aerial 1080 has been applied.
We are concerned that bird repellents included in 1080 baits to date have not proven to be effective.
We hold that game animal species which were once introduced, such as deer, pigs, chamois, tahr, goats and wapiti are now endemic to New Zealand and are best controlled through sustainable hunting. There is no logical reason to seek to eradicate these animals from our bush and a powerful argument that to maintain hunting they should be retained as viable ongoing populations.
In addition, New Zealand’s native forests have evolved over time in the presence of browsing by moa. In the absence of moa our forests are now browsed by introduced animals. Without browsing, slow growing replacement larger trees will be progressively crowded and shaded out by fast growing undergrowth and over time the forest will die. Sustainable populations of browsing quadrupeds are essential to the ongoing health and regeneration of our forests. New Zealand First actively and positively supports hunting these animals and we oppose any moves which may endanger them, overtly or inadvertently.
New Zealand First is not persuaded by assurances on the efficacy of either bird repellent or deer repellent added to 1080 baits, and we do not accept the use of these provably ineffective repellents as a justification for the continued use of aerial 1080.
New Zealand First regards possum fur as a valuable resource which should be harvested for the good of the nation, providing jobs and export earnings as part of an overall strategy for the management and protection of our forests and bush as well as farmed cattle and deer.
New Zealand First policy on recreational saltwater fishing is covered in detail in the Primary Industries section.
Richard Prosser on this policy
"New Zealand First believes in the right of all New Zealanders to responsibly hunt, shoot, fish and enjoy the great outdoors and to take food from the bush, the rivers and the seas. We support a sensible balance between the often overlapping requirements of outdoor recreational activities and those of industry, farming, conservation, tourism and the environment."