Auckland Council funded $91,000 goat hunt that didn't kill any goats

Auckland Council funded $91,000 goat hunt that didn't kill any goats
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Auckland Council spent $91,000 hunting for goats in part of Auckland in the last year - but with no success.

Auckland Ratepayers' Alliance spokesperson Jo Holmes said it is "absurd expenditure", but the council has defended itself.

In the Hunua Ranges in the 2016/17 year, the council spent $91,742 on goat hunting, according to figures obtained by Stuff through the Local Government Official Information and Meetings Act.

A council spokesperson told Stuff that feral goats had been eliminated in the area in the previous five years but "can re-establish a large population from a few remnant individuals".

"This is why it is important to continue intensive surveillance for a couple of years to eliminate any remaining animals that could lead to a resurgence of the population," the spokesperson said.

Ms Holmes disagrees.

"The council is literally paying professional hunters to take bush walks. We hope the exercise was worth it," she said.

"Over the last five years the average per-kill cost was $1600. This is ridiculous considering amateur hunters would happily do the job free of charge, if the council would let them."

The council aims to keep goat numbers under control in order to protect native plants and allow them to mature. The hunting is carried out by professional hunters using dogs and rifles.

Newshub.

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