Wetland Tourism

Nature-based Wetlands Tourism

Country towns in Victoria will benefit financially by introducing Nature-based Wetlands Tourism to their regions.

The towns of Kerang, Boort and Donald in central and north-west Victoria have magnificent wetlands in their backyards. In Kerang, for example, most of its wetlands are listed under the Ramsar Convention as Wetlands of International Importance. These wetlands are not only rich in bird life, but also in other native wildlife and most importantly, they are rich in Koori heritage.

The Kerang wetlands support over 150 species of birds including migratory populations which travel from China and Japan each year.

Individual wetlands have their own charm and beauty. The shape of Lake Cullen, for example, acts as a sound auditorium. The voices of 150,000 native and migratory waterbirds are as beautiful as any symphony orchestra.

A perfect destination for American, European and Asian travellers.

The Penguins at Philip Island represent a $150 million tourism industry for the state. The Southern Right Whales arrive at the Victorian coastal town of Warrnambool in May, giving birth just off shore before leaving for their Antarctic feeding grounds. The whales' stay for only a few months brings in about $20 million to the local Warrnambool economy.

In the mid 1990s, the previous Kennett Government looked for ways to assist regional Victoria. Small Business and Tourism Minister, Louise Asher, hired tourism consultants to look at different regions to assess which industries would be suitable. Independent tourism consultants, Advance Tourism, looked at the state's north-west region. Their final report (Murray Outback: Regional Tourism Development Plan - July 1997) said that one of the region's best assets was its native wildlife and wetlands and that Nature-based Wetlands Tourism should seriously be looked at.

A partnership between the Victorian Government, shire councils, VicTourism and local tourism groups to promote the state's wetlands would be a winner for local regions as well as native waterbirds. A thriving tourism industry would also help employ young people and would be a winner for the local Koori community.



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History and Victories

2007 & 2008

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.

View our Opening Weekend 2005 article


The Sunday Age editorial (12 January) calls on the Victorian Bracks Government to ban the recreational shooting of native waterbirds in Victoria.

The Victorian government calls a moratorium. Rescue team travels to Tasmania for the opening weekend of their duck shooting season.


The Bracks Government's own Animal Welfare Advisory Committee (AWAC) recommends that the recreational shooting of native waterbirds be banned in Victoria because of the inherent cruelty.


Lead shot banned in Victoria.


Premier Bob Carr bans the recreational shooting of native waterbirds in NSW, the second state Labor government to ban the activity.


The Age newspaper editorial (24 March) calls for duck shooting to be outlawed. The first sentence says: 'Duck shooting is not a sport, it is an obscenity'.


The recreational shooting of native waterbirds is banned in Western Australia by the then Labor Government.


Latest Poll

Latest Morgan Research Poll - Majority of Victorians want duck shooting banned

Open Letter to Premier John Brumby

The Age (page 5) Thursday 27 November 2008 - click on image or link to view article.

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Latest Morgan Research Poll - Majority of Victorians want duck shooting banned.

View Morgan Research Poll PDF

- Read Poll Finding - Read Summary Report

This poll was made possible due to a grant from Voiceless.

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