A Broken Heart in Gippsland
While usually, a Trust for Nature protective covenant would not allow recreational shooting of native birds, hunt club Field and Game Australia (FGA) has been given an exemption.
Through freedom of information, RVOTDS has obtained documents which show that via a tri-party agreement between FGA, Trust for Nature and Department of Transport (Vic Roads), FGA has been awarded $504,000 of taxpayers money to "protect" Heart Morass, a large wetland property in Gippsland, which is home to threatened species.
Trust for Nature provided an exemption for FGA (see letter below), to be able to shoot native ducks and quail at Heart Morass. Toxic lead ammunition is still used legally for shooting quail in Victoria. It is still used illegally in duck shooting as is reported most years. Sadly, Heart Morass was one of the wetlands tested by EPA recently which had ducks with lead levels unsafe for human consumption.
Lead ammunition is not only dangerous for humans who consume animals shot with it, but other species such as protected eagles, who feed on the dead and injured animals affected by lead shot.
Shotgun cartridges contain numerous pellets. When fired, most don't hit the target, but fall into the environment. Some species such as swans, mistake the pellets for grit which they need to digest their food. It takes just one lead pellet to cause a painful death.
Please let Trust for Nature know this is neither acceptable, nor necessary. We are confident that other groups would welcome the opportunity to care for native flora and fauna - unconditionally, without demanding an exemption to shoot.
You can send a respectful note to Trust for Nature here.