We can now see our present goal of 200,000 members as part of the great SSAA family clearly on the horizon. Possibly the restrictions of recent times have given people the chance to breathe and take a moment to see the shooting sports for the healthy and safe activity they are. Certainly the increased activity at our SSAA shooting ranges and patronage at the network of firearms retail outlets across the country would indicate that.
Our regular surveys indicate members join SSAA for any number of reasons and once they’re on board they develop awareness of the myriad of services and openings available to members and often become far more immersed than they ever thought they would so I urge you to become involved and get the most from your sport.
When we return to some semblance of normality, take the chance to explore the alternative and diverse array of shooting disciplines covered at your local SSAA branch. If your interests are not satisfied on their calendar then consider travelling to another nearby branch where your preferences can be met. SSAA is a broad church and it’s not difficult to find something which might appeal to you. If it’s not currently offered, lend a hand and you might be able to assist in expanding the options available.
While we’ve been distracted by COVID-19, another pressing issue has largely been forgotten or at least pushed down the priority list. Biodiversity conservation, a matter of critical importance to Australia and an area where Australian hunters can and do take an active and contributory role, is a topic which will be starved of proper attention, funding and resource allocation.
Historically, the left-leaning ideologs who appear to drive the ever-deteriorating conservation agenda in Australia have refused to acknowledge that ethical and legitimate hunters can play a key biodiversity role when engaged as the valuable resource they are. Recent scientific studies in Europe and Scandinavia have agreed hunters play an important part in monitoring the biodiversity of an area and, more than anyone, can accurately provide information about the animals located in a particular area and even localised environmental changes.
This apparent revelation notes that much of the monitoring activity conducted by hunters is not readily accessible to scientists. It begs the question as to just how open-minded and really committed the science and purist conservation community is, or at least has been in achieving their stated goals.
Of course the long-established and successful engagement of legitimate hunters in biodiversity conservation efforts has been well documented in North America and Africa and any number of animal and plant species, previously endangered or threatened, have been returned to a status of stability and recovery, even abundance through well-coordinated strategies and efforts.
Even in Australia, SSAA Conservation and Wildlife Management groups have played a key role in some animal and plant recoveries but these successes have been downplayed or ignored by both extreme ‘green’ groups and governments who bow to this left-wing rubbish. The image of a threat makes great media headlines for them but does nothing to save our threatened flora and fauna, quite the opposite. We can only hope Australia won’t be the last country to see the light.
If you have a particular interest in this subject I recommend you do some factual research, become an active part of one of the SSAA conservation groups and individually lobby any elected representative you can. It’s just another positive way SSAA members contribute to a better Australia.