Feral horse hunting

Video: Hunting horses in an Australian national park

Hunting wild horses in national parks is considered a valid and useful tool in the control of feral animals in the Northern Territory and this video demonstrates the effect a handful of hunters can have.

Posted on Youtube by the Adventure Bound channel, it follows three hunters on foot taking part in the Back Country Hunting program in Lichfield National Park. 

Hunting horses is arguably the most toxic issue facing hunters in Australia and the video’s presenter acknowledges this, saying, “Hopefully there’s not too much hate in the comments for us taking the horses. They are ferals out here.”

In NSW and Victoria, the issue of brumbies in the Snowy Mountains regions has been highly charged, to the point where the Nationals and the Animal Justice Party (AJP) vote together while the Greens and AJP are at times voting against each other. 

Aerial culling operations have been opposed in equal measure by the pro-brumby lobby and the animal welfare lobby.

The Australian Brumby Alliance has just started a legal bid against Parks Victoria to stop future culls, on the pretext that shooting them breaches the Prevent of Cruelty to Animals Act. 

“Parks Victoria have chosen cruelty over common sense or compassion by shooting our beautiful, sentient wild brumby horses,” Alliance president Jill Pickering said, using words that sum up the feelings around the issue.

The hunters in the video cull six feral horses during the day’s hunt.

“I don’t know how I feel about shooting horses,” admits the host. “They definitely do do damage, just not as much as buff. 

“They’re not entirely going to waste. We’re taking a bit of meat off them.”




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  1. The people wanting to stop feral horses from being shot have very little to say about all the other feral pests being culled in the same way but if the Supreme Court action by ABA is successful there could be far reaching implications for all feral animal control and animal lib people could use it to stop recreational hunting in Victoria. That is to say, if shooting is deemed inhumane as a means control it would also be deemed inhumane for hunters to shoot any animal. I do not support the NT initiative that allows recreational hunters into National Parks but I do support the use of suitable qualified shooters under supervision as a means to control feral pests. The horse advocates are willing to take action against Parks Vic in the courts and by filing complaints with the RSPCA so the job has to be done using best practise. This video does not show best practise. Three shots into one horse and it was not rendered insensible. That is evident because they followed a blood trail. Comments like miscommunication and botched shots do not help the cause.

  2. We have an obligation to protect our community from individuals who jeopardise our future … slaughtering brumbies under the guise of feral management is faux-naïf and needs to be called out for what it is … an excuse to inflict unnecessary pain and suffering on a defenceless companion animal … for too long we have neglected the important task of building up an ethical system in which justice for animals is regarded as the norm rather than the exception …