Mixed Emotions After the 2022 Duck Opening Announcement


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Duck hunters are experiencing mixed emotions after the Game Management Authority finally released the arrangements for the 2022 duck season, including changes to the start times, daily bag limit and hunted species.

Duck numbers have never been higher, with almost perfect breeding conditions witnessed over the past year. Duck hunters were expecting a full season and a decent bag size; however, once again, the political climate has beaten the science to form a decision.

Whilst the GMA announced a full season; many hunters believe the bag is too small after surveys have confirmed high numbers of ducks.

The positive to come from the announcement is that the Animal Justice party have failed dismally in their attempt to get the season banned. A full season has been announced even with their dirty deals to secure its cancellation.

Hunters feel that the extremely late announcement mixed with a small bag and late opening time is a political move to see less hunters participate.

Field and Game Australia said they are “disappointed in the outcome of the decision-making process used to determine the duck season for 2022, despite the hope that was held for the Interim Adaptive Harvest Framework”.

“FGA has for some time now been stating we remain committed to being part of the genuine consultation process and assisting the implementation of the interim model for future season setting”.

“This year, however, the Interim Framework has some gaping holes in the transparency around the decision making, clarity in explanation and what appears to be an overly cautious approach in the modelling”.

One thing is certain the duck hunters need to hit the swamps in numbers, fill their bags daily and show that this tradition isthriving.

GMA Announcement

The Game Management Authority has today announced the arrangements for the 2022 duck season including changes to the start times, daily bag limit and hunted species.

The 2022 season will start at 8:00 am on Wednesday 16 March 2022 and will close 30 minutes after sunset on Monday 13 June 2022.
Hunting start times will be delayed until 8:00am from Wednesday 16 March to Sunday 20 March, inclusive.
The daily bag limit is four birds and hunters are prohibited from hunting the Blue-winged Shoveler and Hardhead across Victoria, as both species were recently listed as threatened due to declining populations.
Reducing the bag limit is a more effective way to reduce seasonal harvest and ensure that duck hunting remains sustainable. This is why the bag limit has been reduced, rather than the season length.
The arrangements for the 2022 duck season are based on analysis and modelling of habitat and waterbird surveys conducted across eastern Australia and data relating to game duck abundance, habitat distribution and climate.


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