Wednesday, October 1, 2014

Goats and 1080 Poison.

   While we were hut hopping through the Whanganui National Park we saw so many wild goats. They thrive in the bush down there and DOC has a hard time trying to keep the numbers down. I hear of people who are employed to go out several months at a time into the bush to cull them. 

   Jerusalem shot two goats during the first two days of tramping. The first a young one which we ate and enjoyed very much in a curry. The second goat was a black nanny goat the boys shot at Trains Hut. While I was busy painting they went of to get us some meat. I heard several shots and they eventually came back with the kill. 

   To make a long story short, they had stalked the goat, shot it, wounded it, they shot again, and it fell over and promptly disappeared. When they went over to investigate they saw it had fallen about 4m down into a ravine. They had a bit of a scramble around and down to retrieve the quarry.

   They spent the rest of the day processing the meat. They cut it in strips and dried/smoked it in the chimney and around the stove. Jerusalem cooked up a whole lot in a stew for dinner which we all enjoyed very much. It was to be our last fresh meat for the rest of the eight days.

    Next morning we packed up and began walking down the track, a few meters from the track we turn and actually read the signs that we had seen but not paid any attention to. It looked just like this one I took a photo of at another hut:

   So basically we had just eaten a goat which was poisoned.  We had no idea how much a poisoned goat would affect us, but it was very likely it had eaten poison because as we walked on up the track we began to see a lot of 1080 bait all over the ground dropped by air. We thought it was better to be safe than sorry and threw out all the dried meat we had. Trains Hut was on the boarder of the poisoned area so the first young goat we ate would not have been poisoned having been shot well out of the poisoned area. 

    Jerusalem texted an uncle who told us that we would have to eat quite a lot of poisoned goat meat to kill us and we hadn't eaten enough to even get sick. We were glad to hear that, but the text caused a lot of rumors to get spread about among our friends and when we got home everyone thought we had been sick and dying! 

   I know that possums and other pests need to be controlled, but I don't like 1080 at all. It is deadly and kills everything, I don't know enough about it to comment, but seeing the deadly 1080 bait all throughout the forest floor and then seeing animals lying dead along the path just makes me feel sick. Surely there must be a better way of pest control without having to endanger all the animal life in the bush.

    P.S. I have since done research. 1080 kills the massive amounts of pests that we don't want in our bush that's good it helps bird population, dramatically in some cases. But I still don't like the idea of poison in our native forests causing thousands of animals to die in agony native 'protected' wildlife and farm animals included. My personal opinion is that people spend more energy finding a good pest control alternative to 1080 than arguing. Please don't get too fired up in the comments this is supposed to be a nice happy art blog...!

If you are interested in the issue visit these opposing sites.
DOC  vs. The 1080haters

 If you are interested in beautiful art click here...


  1. Ooh, that's kind of scary. Good thing you're ok. But too bad you had to throw out all that meat. That poison does seem like a waste of life.

  2. Ohhhhh creeps! So glad it wouldn't make you sick to have eaten just what you ate! Ewwww creeps!

    1. Yes, so am I. Me and Jeru did experience some random twitching that night which is supposed to be one of the symptoms!..

  3. Very sad. This is Written Without Prejudice of course; DoC will never tell you or the rest of NZ that 1080 is one of the chemicals that causes an endocrine disruption in living cells - a lethal dose causes an extremely painful death lasting hours if not days to run the course but a non lethal dose will not really make itself known for a few months, years or decades - but one of the first organs to be affected will be your liver - if I was you; you need to check on the health of your liver. The World Health Organization warned to keep 1080 out of the environment in the 70's - alot of countries listened and banned or strictly regulated the use of 1080 - NZ did not listen!!! Please remember that NZ has been using 1080 for over 60 years now and that the people that used to load the hoppers, etc. without air masks, are now coming down with all sorts of medical problems. Please remember, that the NZ Govt. owns the factory that makes other products from the imported 1080 - like 1080 pellets designed for cats, etc. ie. tasting like sardines and I believe that these products are exported to other countries. The Govt. will keep telling you that the NZ countryside needs this toxin to remain healthy.
    Please ensure that you have your health checked. Good luck.

  4. You say you don't know enough about it to comment but offer an opinion anyway. Your statement that it kills everything sums up your lack of knowledge. I'd suggest you look at to find out why and how it is used and the risks associated with it which are minimal. Assuming you had eaten a sub lethally poisoned goat the amount you consumed will be far less than what is required to cause harm.

    1. Thank you for your comment. I looked up the website and I admit that it looks like 1080 is a huge benefit to our wildlife. Have since updated the blog. Sorry to have 'got your goat' I was just trying to write something interesting for my readers...