Science based evidence: the knowledge of Emeritus Professor Rob Mulley has been invaluable to the NSW Game Council.

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Weatherby winner; Game Council scientist rewarded; trouble in Kiwi game council; anti-gun hypocrisy as politician arrested; roo meat exports to resume; bunnies busting out; more gun-crime breakthroughs.

Weatherby winner

Ray Smith is having an extra special Christmas this year. The Batemans Bay, NSW, resident has won Sporting Shooter’s subscription prize of a Weatherby Vanguard S2. What a way to get into 2013, enjoying the accuracy and good design of the new Vanguard! Don’t despair if you missed out, because next time around, everyone gets $79.95 worth of value for subscribing. Check out the January 2013 issue for all the details about the Ridgeline triple-pack of fleece tops that you’ll get for free when you subscribe. With one fleece in camo, one in olive and one in blaze, as well as your monthly magazine’s worth of all things shooting and hunting, you can’t go wrong!

Game Council scientist rewarded

Game Council NSW councillor Rob Mulley was awarded the prestigious title Emeritus Professor by the University of Western Sydney. Emeritus Professor Mulley has been on the Game Council since 2008 as a wildlife management scientist. He is a leader in the field of animal science and has written over 150 scientific publications. His expert knowledge in agriculture, vertebrate pest management, wildlife management and sustainable land use has been recognised nationally and internationally, and it is considered a significant asset to the Game Council. “We are honoured and privileged to have Emeritus Professor Mulley on our team,” Game Council CEO Brian Boyle said.

Trouble in Kiwi game council

New Zealand’s auditor-general has been called in to look at possible irregularities in the books of the Auckland-Waikato Fish & Game Council, following complaints by four of its 12 councillors. The four wrote to the NZ environment minister saying there were errors in the accounts, a lack of proper governance, and eroding confidence in the council. The retiring CEO, Doug Emmett, was confident the AWFGC would be cleared by any investigation, and hinted at disaffection by a “dissenting group”. The disaffection appears widespread; police had to intervene at a recent AWFGC meeting when members of the public refused to accept a motion to exclude them.

Anti-gun hypocrisy as politician arrested

The US gun lobby has been angered by the arrest of an Illinois senator and aspiring US congressman, Donne Trotter, for trying to board a plane with a pistol and loaded magazine in his carry-on luggage, but it’s not the authorities or the law that’s raised their ire. Trotter is an anti-gun politician who has reportedly voted against concealed-carry laws in his home state, one of the few places where it is still illegal, and also voted against semi-automatic longarms. He also refused to support a bill that would have reduced the penalties for carrying a concealed firearm. Trotter is reported to have had the wrong address on his firearms licence and questions have been raised about the registration status of the handgun. His plight is being held up as a sign of the hypocrisy of the anti-gun lobby. Even though it appears Trotter is genuine in saying he forgot the gun was in his bag, he’s getting no sympathy from the gun lobby, which no doubt wants to see him receive a hefty sentence.

Roo meat exports to resume

Shooting is better off with the announcement that Russia has ended its ban on the importation of kangaroo meat, allowing the eminently sustainable and ethical industry get back on its feet. Macro Meats is the company that has been given the go-ahead after a four-year ban. Roos are said to be in plague proportions in many areas, partly because of the loss of the export market and partly due to excellent seasons recently, and business and rural interests have warmly welcomed Russia’s change of heart. It will be a huge relief to many professional shooters.

Bunnies busting out

Rabbit populations are booming again, according to the Invasive Animals Co-operative Research Centre, which says a major cause is the increasing resistance to viruses. The pests can cost the Australian economy as much as $200 million a year in damage. But, as with everything, there are two sides to the story: The dramatic drop in rabbit number over previous years hurt at least one business, with Akubra having to source fur from overseas. The IACRC says landowners are being encouraged to actively target rabbits with any means possible, including ripping warrens, poisoning and so on. It is also a good opportunity for hunters, who may find it easier to get access to land.

More gun-crime breakthroughs

NSW police this week arrested six men over a suburban shoot-out in which a woman in a nearby house was wounded. Led by the Middle Eastern Organised Crime squad, about 100 officers were involved in raids on several residences in south-west Sydney. In addition, 26-year-old Bilal Haouchar, who is currently on parole for manslaughter and armed robbery, was extradited from Queensland in connection with the shooting. Once again, the news has led many law-abiding shooters to question whether the police focus on legitimate shooters is justified in light of a problem that seems clearly based in organised crime.


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Mick Matheson

Mick grew up with guns and journalism, and has included both in his career. A life-long hunter, he has long-distant military experience and holds licence categories A, B and H. In the glory days of print media, he edited six national magazines in total, and has written about, photographed and filmed firearms and hunting for more than 15 years.

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