The Wangaratta Chronicle has published an article on Field & Game Australia’s rejected proposal of resources to help rehabilitate the Winton Wetlands highlighting the organisation’s experience, expertise and history with conservation.
In the article, author Shane Douthie mentioned the success of the Heart Morass wetlands, a project FGA said it was proud to be a part of.
“Some decent rainfall would help with both the ecology and the economies of the Winton Wetlands but the real question according to FGA is whether the test of the eco-tourism model will ever deliver the benefits that were delivered when hunters and fishers enjoyed access,” Mr Douthie said.
“Benefits that were delivered when hunters and fishers enjoyed access.”
Mr Douthie refers to them as “hunter conservationists”, which FGA believes is a fair statement because sustainable hunting is unfeasible without conservation.
FGA said this was something often ignored when it comes to discussions around sustainable hunting.
Without wetlands people will struggle to find waterfowl. And if there is no water, there are no waterbirds. To maintain a species, you must maintain its habitat.
FGA said hunter conservationists would ensure there was sustainable management plans in place for future generations to enjoy recreational hunting and maintain wildlife populations.
There will be roadblocks, and some people closed off to the idea that hunters are also conservationists.
But as Mr Douthie mentioned, look at the Heart Morass and all the hard work FGA volunteers have put in. The work FGA and its members does is important, and the organisation should be proud to be Australia’s most surprising conservationists.
Click here to read Shane Douthie's article Hunters fears for future of Winton Wetlands published in The Wangaratta Chronicle.