From News Hub
They say the plan could lead to a decline in public support for conservation policy, because it’s an “impossible” target destined for “inevitable failure”.
The plan was announced by former Prime Minister John Key in 2016, and Conservation Minister Eugenie Sage has previously said it needed a “reality check”.
Victoria University School of Biological Sciences associate professor Wayne Linklater and ecologist Dr Jamie Steer said their research shows the plan is based on flawed assumptions.
Those assumptions are:
- Predator extermination is the best way to protect biodiversity
- The country needs to eradicate every stoat, rat and possum to protect biodiversity
- A complete eradication of predators is possible
“None of these assumptions are true,” Mr Linklater said.
“Complete eradication of predators is technologically impossible, and biodiversity is affected more in some places by habitat decline and plant eaters than it is by predators.”
He said eliminating select predators from complex communities of plants, animals, and humans was likely to be harmful, causing populations of other introduced animals to erupt.