Friday, 5 June 1992

Western Australia has become the first State in Australia to ban duck shooting.

Last night, the Government’s Acts Amendment (Game Birds Protection) Bill passed through the Legislative Assembly.

The Bill successfully passed through the Legislative Council in March.

Environment Minister Bob Pearce said once the Bill was proclaimed, the law would be changed so that duck shooting would be banned as a sport in WA.

“The State Government is opposed in principle to duck shooting as a sport and public opinion was fully behind the move to ban it,” Mr Pearce said.

“WA’s native wildlife should be protected, admired and respected, not shot for pleasure.

“There is a widespread view in the community, and this has been backed by a Westpoll and numerous letters and phone calls to my office, that this sort of recreational pursuit is just not on.”

Changes to the law will mean that the existing ministerial discretion to declare open seasons on ducks, geese and quail, so that they could be shot for sport, will be removed from the Wildlife Conservation Act.

So, too, will the capacity to prescribe licences in the regulations to allow recreational duck shooting.

Saving provisions in the CALM Act, affecting the classification of certain nature reserves as shooting or hunting areas, and the regulations governing the taking of
game species will be repealed.

However, Mr Pearce said the ability to make regulations to control the taking of fauna subject to damage licences would be retained in the Act.

He said this meant damage licences could still be issued to landholders who needed
to control ducks on their property.