The number of ponies killed on the roads in the New Forest last year showed an encouraging decrease compared to 1999.
Says Dave Guy, Field Officer for the ILPH (International League for the Protection of Horses), "The reason that the number of ponies killed in the forest fell from 100 in 1999 to 78 last year must be put down to the fact that a lot of them have now been fitted with reflective collars."
"The sad news is that over 50% of the vehicles involved in the reported road traffic accidents with ponies last year were driven by local motorists - so we are asking everybody who drives in the forest to please slow down !"
The reflective collars cost £7 each and so far only 22% of the ponies that frequent the parts of the forest where there are roads, are wearing them. So, to protect a few more ponies this Autumn as the evenings start to draw in, the ILPH is asking for donations to buy those unprotected ponies a reflective collar each.
Adds Dave Guy, "£10,000 would help an awful lot of ponies stay safer at night this winter and we are appealing to the public to dig deep in their pockets to help stop this carnage."
Comments Sue Westwood, Clerk to the Verderers, "We are delighted that the ILPH is supporting us yet again to provide more reflective collars to help the ponies be seen by motorists on dark winter nights."
Those wishing to help buy the New Forest ponies reflective collars should send their donation to ILPH, Anne Colvin House, Snetterton, Norfolk NR16 2LR mentioning the 'Buy a Pony a Collar' campaign