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Duck season announcement a mixed bag

THE State Government has announced a shortened duck hunting season, sparking outrage from all sides of the table.

The announcement of the 20-day season caused a stir from animal rights activists who wanted the season abandoned, and from hunters who were disappointed by its length.

The Game Management Authority (GMA) said the season would run for 20 days, down from last year’s restricted season of 37, with a daily bag limit of two birds per person.

Shooting of grey teal and chestnut teal ducks is banned in some areas, while the blue-winged shoveler cannot be hunted at all this season.

The arrangements for the 2021 duck hunting season were based on analysis of habitat and waterbird surveys conducted across eastern Australia and other data relating to game duck abundance, habitat distribution and climate.

The GMA said partner agencies, including Victoria Police, would be patrolling both public land and private properties to ensure compliance with hunting, animal welfare and public safety laws.

Local hunter, Terry Houlihan, was angered by the announcement and said the season was being banned by stealth.

“Well, I think it's just an absolute disgrace,” he said.

“Really, it's just a shady form of banning duck shooting, isn't it really?

“A Wednesday shoot? Who can go shoot on a Wednesday?

“Two birds? Well, somebody said during the week, you could go there and you might drive 500 miles, and shoot two birds with the first shot, then you go home.

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