Duck Hunting

My adjournment matter is for the Minister for Agriculture, and the action I seek on behalf of the duck-hunting fraternity is for the minister to immediately declare the 2022 duck season of up to 10 birds per day beginning on 19 March.

Victorian hunters have not enjoyed a full season since 2018.

The season in 2019 was restricted to 64 days, in 2020 it was 38 days, and it was only 20 days last year.

Duck hunting is a popular and sustainable recreational pastime which delivers millions of dollars to regional economies. Our small local businesses—camping and outdoor recreational centres, fuel centres, butchers and bakeries—all need to be sustainable, and we have had a shocking few years. In Gippsland we have seen fires and droughts, and now we have had lockdowns from pandemic restrictions.

For generations many families have used this as a pastime, with grandparents, parents and children all enjoying this pastime.

For the past seven years the Andrews government has been systematically eroding the rights of hunters without the science to back up their evidence.

Recreational hunters often organise important, sustainable enhancements to our wetlands. We know that near Heart Morass in Sale in my electorate the most amazing work has been done by Field and Game volunteers. Over hundreds of hours, they have recreated a wetland from a wasteland and improved bird numbers.

We also know that the La Niña effect has been operating this past year and great quantities of rain have fallen right along the eastern seaboard of Australia.

Climatic conditions have been excellent and favourable, and there is no reason not to declare a full season.

The third week in March is coming up—it is only six weeks away—and this government needs to declare the season open.

Recently I enjoyed participating in a Field and Game pollie shoot. MPs, pollies of all different persuasions go out to Lilydale and enjoy the event. It was the first time I had participated. I had practised target shooting and a shotgun and I was really pleased to participate.

In fact, The Nationals won the event. Team Nationals.

We really enjoyed it. I hit eight clays in a row and nearly fell off my perch.

 

 

Answer

 Answered: 8 March 2022

The arrangements for the 2022 duck hunting season were announced by the Game Management Authority (GMA) on 26 February 2022 which include:

  • a daily bag limit of four (4) birds
  • the season commencing on Wednesday 16 March and ending on Monday 13 June 2022, inclusive
  • hunting start times delayed to 08:00 am across the State from Wednesday 16 March – Sunday 20 March, inclusive
  • it is prohibited to hunt the Blue-winged Shoveler and Hardhead given the concern over the conservation status of these two duck species.

This is the first year in which an Interim Harvest Model, a model based on harvest modelling designed by leading experts in waterfowl ecology and population dynamics, Professors Klaassen and Kingsford, has been used to guide the 2022 duck season settings.

The process and details of the information used by the GMA to formulate recommendations for a duck season and specifically the 2022 season is publicly available on the GMA website.

 

 

The Hon. Mary-Anne Thomas MP 

Minister for Agriculture