Friday, 24 February 2023
BirdLife Australia is deeply disappointed with the Victorian Government’s decision to allow duck shooting to go ahead in the state this year.
Despite three years with more rains, our declining populations of ducks and other waterbirds have not yet recovered after years of prolonged and widespread drought. Long-term monitoring shows that the bounce-back of waterbird numbers has not been as high as would normally be expected and several good seasons are needed to replenish the losses that have occurred.
Rather than giving the ducks a break, the Victorian Government has announced a 2023 duck season, meaning there will be no respite for Victoria’s ducks at the many wetlands open to shooting. This is a bad outcome for waterbirds. They need this season to build up numbers, as will the many non-target waterbird species that will be disturbed or in the line of fire of the shooters’ guns.
Wildlife Victoria says that:
Even with some concessions, including a shortened the season, reduced bag limit and removing Australasian (Blue-winged) Shovelers and Hardheads off the list of game birds permitted to be shot, BirdLife Australia is extremely concerned that many non-target and threatened species will be severely disturbed by shooting in their wetland homes, even if the birds themselves manage to escape being killed or maimed.
While BirdLife Australia has not been successful in getting this year’s duck shooting season cancelled we will continue to advocate that the practice should be abolished in Victoria and throughout Australia. We hope that this is the last year it is necessary to make our case to stop the killing of so many native birds.
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