Minister for Agriculture, Jaala Pulford today announced a full-length duck hunting season for 2016 with modified bag and species limits.
Below average rainfall has reduced duck numbers and habitats. Therefore, the Game Management Authority recommended that a reduced bag is necessary to ensure the sustainability of duck populations.
Once the season commences, the bag limit will be reduced from 10 birds per day to eight birds for the opening day and four birds per day for the remainder of the season.
Because of reduced habitat and low numbers, the hunting of Blue-winged Shoveler will be prohibited.
The duck season will last 12 weeks, opening day will be Saturday 19 March and it will close on Monday 13 June.
The decision to modify the 2016 duck season is based on expert advice from the Game Management Authority (GMA) and extensive habitat and waterbird surveys across eastern Australia.
The GMA and partner compliance agencies, including DELWP, DEDJTR, Parks Victoria and Victoria Police, will be out in force in 2016 to ensure compliance with hunting and public safety laws and to ensure the new restrictions are adhered to.
The GMA will continue to monitor conditions in the lead up to and during the season. Certain wetlands may be closed to hunting to protect duck numbers or endangered species.
Details of the 2016 duck season will be regularly updated on the GMA website www.gma.vic.gov.au and the Game Hunting Victoria phone app.
Quotes attributable to Minister for Agriculture, Jaala Pulford
“Duck season is an important economic contributor to the rural economy and I encourage our 26,000 licenced hunters get out into our rural and regional areas as usual.”
“Hunters are reminded to act safely and responsibly at all times while enjoying their hunting.”
Quote attributable to Minister for Environment, Lisa Neville
“The changes to the 2016 duck season in Victoria reflect the impact of the prevailing dry conditions on native duck numbers, breeding and habitat availability across large areas of eastern Australia.”