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Have your say on deer management

Have your say on deer management

The Victorian Draft Deer Management Strategy has been released for public comment and SSAA Victoria members are invited to have a say before the November 29 public submission deadline. A copy is available through the link at the bottom of the page.

The strategy is a product of the Sustainable Hunting Action Plan (SHAP). SSAA Victoria has been one of the stakeholders heavily involved behind the scenes in the development of SHAP and attended a major workshop in June as part of the strategy.

The workshop was also attended by fellow hunting organisations, government departments and other interest groups such as the Victorian National Parks Association and shire councils in the areas covered in the strategy.

At the workshop the Association stressed that as the strategy came out of a hunting plan, it must provide benefits to hunters by providing sustainable deer-hunting opportunities.

“It should be noted that Australian Dear Association, Game Management Authority and Department of Economic Development, Jobs, Transport and Resources were very supportive in this area,” said SSAA Victoria Hunting Development Manager David Laird.

“However, there are many competing and often conflicting voices in the current deer debate which were also considered during the creation of the Draft¬†Deer Management Strategy.

“There were certainly times when we felt that there were attempts by some stakeholders to hijack the strategy by making simplistic calls to declare deer pests but these were¬†strongly rejected.

“In spite of those different views on some issues there is no doubt that there is also a lot of common ground.

“The Association is satisfied that the guiding principles outlined in the strategy should safeguard future deer hunting opportunities in Victoria, but the devil will be in the detail.”

Mr Laird said how the deer and hunters fare will be revealed when the strategy is finally implemented (probably early in the New Year) and invited SSAA Victoria members to make a submission before the November 29 deadline.

“SSAA Victoria will continue to closely monitor the situation to ensure the strategy is not hijacked by other interest groups and actually delivers for hunters as much as possible,” he said.

“The Association recognises that there is not a single solution that will satisfy all interest groups or be effective in all circumstances.

“There are aspects to the strategy that are certainly concerning, but at least the draft strategy provides a transparent framework where coordinated management can occur.

“There is significant potential for different stakeholders, including hunters, to work together in many cases with wins for all concerned.

“SSAA Victoria will work through the final draft document in detail and make a formal submission. Individual members are also encouraged to have their say as well.”

The draft strategy and survey are available at the following link:

https://engage.vic.gov.au/draft-victorian-deer-management-strategy