DEER IN LANDHOLDERS’ SIGHTS AS MANAGEMENT LAWS CHANGED

Thursday, 1 June 2017

THE State Government is cracking down on exploding wild deer population around Glen Innes and Inverell, with new deer management strategies announced as part of the response to the NSW Natural Resource Commission’s (NRC) review of pest animal management.

Member for Northern Tablelands Adam Marshall welcomed today’s government response, saying it would help landholders and the community put a check on the fast-growing wild deer population in the region.

The NRC’s state-wide review made 33 recommendations to government for improving the management of pest animals across public and private land. It aims to minimise their impact on agriculture, the environment and the community.

“Wild deer are a common sight around Glen Innes and Inverell, particularly in the woods of Emmaville and around Copeton Dam – posing a hazard for drivers, a continual frustration for landholders and impacting the environment for native animals,” Mr Marshall said.

“While wild deer will be retained as a game species under the Game and Feral Animal Control Act 2002, in hotspot areas that includes the Glen Innes LGA, the NSW Government will allow greater control options, including suspending licence restrictions for deer hunting,” Mr Marshall said.

“These suspensions allow game hunting licence holders to hunt in ways that would otherwise be prohibited. Changes in the hunting season includes; the use of spotlights or electronic devices; hunting of game fleeing fire or smoke; use of aircraft, watercraft or motor vehicles; use of baits, lures or decoys; or hunting at night.”

Although landholder members and employees will continue to be exempt from any deer hunting restrictions on their own land, the Government will provide a landholder register and hunter register in Glen Innes Severn Council. This will allow licensed and reputable hunters to be better utilised in the fight against pests.

Also in response to the NRC recommendation for managing wild deer numbers, the NSW Government will facilitate the development of a NSW Deer Management Strategy by the end of 2017, to provide state-level oversight and planning for wild deer control.

The NSW Deer Management Strategy will be developed in consultation with Government and non-government stakeholders, to provide guidance related to the issue of wild deer in NSW Mr Marshall said.

Key areas identified by the NRC review where the NSW Government is taking action include:
• Ensuring strong and responsive pest animal risk management that is outcomes-focused;
• Strengthening governance and planning frameworks at the local, regional and state scale;
• Enabling communities to better engage with managing biosecurity and pest animal risks;
• Implementing more strategic management practices;
• Improving the knowledge base through long-term prioritised research activities; and
• Targeting funding to areas that achieve highest public benefit.

For more information on hunting regulations, requirements and suspensions, visit the DPI website at www.dpi.nsw.gov.au/hunting. The full NSW Government response to the NRC review is available on the DPI website at www.dpi.nsw.gov.au/biosecurity

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