I am writing to you on behalf of my fellow native waterbirds and inhabitants of the Regional Victorian wetlands and rivers.
Currently my friends and I spend our time going about the daily business of survival, seeking out a meager feed and looking after our young ones. Meanwhile, many of these friends are oblivious to the impending destruction that awaits us with the opening of the so called "duck season"; a destruction that is sanctioned by the government of this state.
People who we do not elect, but who are responsible for the protection of all species in the state, believe that our passing can be used as an excuse for gaining (questionable) economic benefits to regional communities. We are not willing participants in this so called "sport" but just innocent creatures of the wild, going about what we have always instinctively done.
Our kind have been inhabitants of this country for thousands of generations, gradually evolving into the species that you see today. We do not seek any more than a feed and the right to exist with the rest of the natural world. Why then do people with guns and death in their hearts and minds seek us out and want our demise? Please ask them to take away their weapons and open their hearts and minds to the beauty of our natural world and leave the innocent in peace.
Australian Wood Ducks are unique to Australia and form life long pairs. Sadly, their numbers are well below long term average. Like most other native waterbird species, Australian Wood Ducks are experiencing a long term decline in abundance and breeding.
Picture courtesy Eleanor Dilley