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TAS Country : September 23rd 2010
10 Tasmanian Country Friday, September 24, 2010 Your Say firstname.lastname@example.org Deer regulation needs major change I have matured into a very passionate responsible hunter who hunts and photographs deer all over Australia, ethically.' TOTAL deer deregulation is not the answer. But major change probably is. I agree with Graeme Stokes's m comments that fawns and does need protection after the ''fawn drop'' for a period of 3-6 months. Master stags need protection from April through to early June. In my opinion, 30 per cent of master bucks get shot during the season, another 40 per cent are shot during the rut, 10 per cent shot throughout the remainder of the year and 10 per cent shot through to the next season. Based on information gathered by the GMSU about 8200 deer are har- vested on deer licenses and another 4000 are harvested on crop protection permits . . . a total of, say, 12,000 deer are harvested annually legally. Now illegally, that's another story. After talking to a lot of people throughout the past 12 months, I believe about 24,000 deer are harvested annually in Tasmania (legally and illegally) and the deer population re- mains stable. It could even be increas- ing. Therefore after considering all fac- tors I think my proposal would accom- modate the needs of everyone --- meat hunters, trophy hunters, farmers etc. Don't totally deregulate the deer season, just modify it. I propose that every person who purchases a licence receives five deer tags, which can be used on any deer of either sex. Stags can be hunted for 10 months of the year . . . (June 1 - Mar 29) protecting them during the rut and for a short time after. Females can be harvested from June 1 - Nov 30 protecting them during the fawn drop until fawns are old enough to look after themselves. Close the deer season for both sexes during the rut and shortly after, say April 1 - May 30. Plenty of stags can be shot during the rut, but we can help the deer herds by closing it during this period and increasing enforcement during April and May. In theory, 20,500 deer can be har- vested by licensed hunters annually with these proposed changes. This should please everyone and sustain good deer numbers throughout the state. Farmers with property-based game management plans can still steer their own boats and manage deer as they see fit.If they require more culling tags, they can apply to the GMSU. I don't think many will need to apply as my proposed five-tag licence system should keep deer numbers to a mini- mum if required. I must stress, I think a five-tag deer license with new hunting seasons would work well in Tasmania with the current debates. I also totally agree with Shane Broadby, the Game Management Ser- vice Unit do an exceptional job. I have had a bit to do with them over the past 12 months, and I've found them all to be dedicated, well-educated people who try extremely hard to find the right balance between hunters, far- mers and sustainable animal popu- lations. Well done, GMSU. Keep up the good work. Now my favourite topic: poaching. Poaching is healthy in this state, and is it any wonder? I am fortunate to have access to good fallow deer habitat, but I, like most hunters in our state, did my share of poaching in my younger days. Back then, you could get away with it and it wasn't as frowned upon as it is today. After saying that, however, I still get the blame for things that happen now, even though I haven't seriously poa- ched for years. In those early days, after so many rejections from land owners to gain access to their land to hunt wallaby and deer, what else could I do, but hunt forestry and jump the odd fence? It still makes me laugh when I think back. I would shoot a young doe on a certain property in the Highlands from time to time for the table and if I did get caught (not that I ever did) . . . I would be a criminal and looked down upon as a low life and yet the following week that farmer would poison 200 deer and throw them in a pit. I have matured into a very passion- ate responsible hunter who hunts and photographs deer all over Australia, ethically. I have studied game management through Queensland University and will continue my studies in the near future. I own a large reputable animal management business and have a lot of deer hunting friends throughout Tas- mania and mainland Australia, so I now have no need to poach. However, I pity those young keen hunters that don't have anywhere to hunt in Tasmania. With talk of locking up more public hunting land and limited opportunities to hunt on private property, what else are they to do? Give them a chance. Never forget your own background, where you came from and how you got a start. I certainly haven't, but there still seems to be a lot of hypocrites out there. ADAM HIGGINS North West Animal and Pest Control Latrobe Precautionary delays in pipe IN answer to Peter McGlone's letter (Tasmanian Country, September 10) regarding the Sassafras Wesley Vale Irrigation scheme and so called threatened species. The Tasmanian Conservation Trust and their mates have had a long record of holding up all sorts of development projects, often on very frivolous grounds, which involve the proponents in long delays and significantly more expense. In this case the installing of the pipelines will have a minimal effect on the environment wherever they go. The only really threatened species in Tasmania are farmers still prepared to work long hours for little reward to feed a generally ungrateful population with cheap food. If mankind had adopted the ''pre- cautionary principle'', which he ap- plauds, from the outset we would still all be living in caves. RICK ROCKLIFF Sassafras 5.99% aNEWLOOKfor an OLD MATE! KEEPING YOUR BALANCE DON T MISS THE SPECIAL ADVERTISING PROMOTION NEXT WEEK IN TASMANIAN COUNTRY HIGHLIGHTING NATIONAL MENTAL HEALTH WEEK Mind & Body Wellbeing
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