Recreational hunting is being explored at a pivotal international gathering with a new study finding there is a real case to utilise Australia’s hunters to manage growing wild deer populations.
Presenting the findings at The Conservation through Sustainable Use of Wildlife Conference in Brisbane on Wednesday, Central Queensland University’s Ellen Freeman said survey responses from almost every state and territory indicated wild deer are presenting challenges on both public and private land.
“The survey responses, with the exemption of the Northern Territory, showed that wild deer are presenting increasing management issues and there is considerable scope for government departments to greater engage with recreational hunters,” she said.
Co-author and University of Queensland Adjunct Fellow Neal Finch welcomed the chance to present the findings at the landmark conference.
“The conference has provided a great opportunity for policymakers, academics and key stakeholders to come together to discuss these important issues,” he said.
The conference has so far heard from a range of speakers, including the RSPCA’s Chief Scientist Bidda Jones, Fish and Game New Zealand’s Bryce Johnson and Teresa Dent from the United Kingdom’s Game & Wildlife Conservation Trust.
The Sporting Shooters’ Association of Australia (SSAA National) is the proud major supporter of the conference, being held at the Pullman Brisbane King George two decades on from the original gathering.