Major decline in waterbird numbers across eastern Australia
Premier Dan Andrews continues the cycle of male gun violence and cruelty to native waterbirds – including ‘canned hunting’
The Coalition Against Duck Shooting has condemned the new Labor Government’s decision to hold a 2015 duck shooting season. Premier Andrews has ignored the latest science that shows a major decline in waterbird numbers and very few wetlands holding water.
Campaign Director Laurie Levy today asked: “Why is Victoria holding a recreational duck shooting season when Professor Richard Kingsford’s latest aerial survey shows waterbird numbers have declined by some 60 per cent? Wetlands across eastern Australia are either rapidly drying out or already dry and native waterbirds are in serious trouble. Professor Kingsford said the numbers of so-called game species in many areas are far below long-term averages.
“Birds seeking refuge from the drought in northern states will become sitting ducks on wetlands that have been artificially filled just prior to the Victorian duck shooting season. The government is introducing a form of canned hunting, just to please Victoria’s dwindling number of duck shooters, who make up only 0.4 per cent of the population,” Levy said.
“The Coalition Against Duck Shooting condemns Premier Dan Andrews and his cabinet, including the nine female MPs, for continuing the former Napthine Government’s unnecessary cycle of male gun violence and cruelty to native waterbirds,” Levy said.
“With so much gun violence taking place around the world today, it is disappointing that in Victoria children from the age of 12 are encouraged onto the wetlands with lethal shotguns and desensitised to violence and cruelty. Instead we would have expected modern-day Labor politicians would want to teach our children about compassion and kindness.
“Unfortunately the Andrews Labor Government is part of the cycle of male gun violence in this state.
“The job of looking after Australia’s native waterbirds in Victoria again falls to the Coalition Against Duck Shooting. We will return to the wetlands in 2015 with our rescue teams and mobile veterinary clinics to help Australia’s native waterbirds,” Levy concluded.
The Victorian Labor Party has announced a recreational duck shooting season despite low numbers of native waterbirds across eastern Australia. Recreational duck shooters, who make up only 0.4% of Victoria's population, will be allowed to inflict violence and cruelty to some 400,000 native waterbirds - does this make Premier Dan Andrews and his Agriculture Minister Jaala Pulford two of the state's worst animal abusers?
Laurie Levy, Campaign director
Photo: An illegally shot and wounded Freckled Duck in the caring hands of a veterinarian (2013).
Photo: X-ray showing single pellet lodged near the wing bone. The bird was operated on and was doing well, but sadly, developed an infection and died.
Our rescue teams will be back on the wetlands on Saturday 21 March 2015 Join us
YouTube election message to Labor's Opposition leader Dan Andrews and all Labor politicians
To Dan Andrews, Danielle Green, John McLindon, Jacinta Allan, Jennifer Kanis, Jane Garrett, Lisa Neville, Bill Shorten, David Feeney, Noah Carroll, and all Labor politicians.
Dear Mr Andrews,
Lay Down Your Guns is singer/songwriter Daniel Gregory's moving protest song which showcases the actions of duck rescuers and the unacceptable brutality recreational duck shooters inflict on native waterbirds in Victoria.
Video of the rescue and subsequent release of an Australasian (Blue-winged) Shoveler shot on the opening of the 2014 Victorian recreational duck shooting season.
One would expect that Victoria's Premier, Dr Denis Napthine, a former veterinarian, would understand the shocking pain and suffering native waterbirds are forced to endure, just so a dwindling number of recreational duck shooters can get their kicks. Victoria's duck shooters make up only 0.4 per cent of the state's population.
It's time this shocking violence was banned for all time.
Kindness and compassion will always trump an act of violence.
Laurie Levy Campaign Director
A message from Laurie Levy to Simon Toop, Director Game Victoria
Moratoriums called in Victoria and South Australia. The rescue team travelled to Moulting Lagoon, the entrance to Freycinet National Park, on the east coast of Tasmania to confront the shooters and protect waterbirds after the Tasmanian government refused to call a moratorium.
Three states in Australia have now banned the recreational shooting of native waterbirds – Western Australia (1990), New South Wales (1995) and now Queensland (10 August 2005)
Queensland’s Premier Beattie becomes the third state Labor government to ban the recreational shooting of native waterbirds.
The Age editorial (19 March) again calls for the recreational shooting of native waterbirds to be banned in Victoria.
The numbers of duck shooters in Victoria drops from 95000 in 1986 to 19,400 today, although only small number were active on the state's wetlands in 2005.