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This is my pure bred Lab Dash. He lives for the hunt and really knows when a hunt is close. I hunt for his enjoyment probably more than my own.
Salvatore Carrvale sent us some photos of his "furry" hunting companion.
Sarah and Daniel Hawkins, Gippsland
With the start of the 2020 Duck Season in Victorian Isla and Wally Hawkins were keen to get out with with Lenny the lab.
Bob Griffiths, Tootgarook, Vic
It was season opening at Boort in central Victoria about the middle 1990's.
My son Cameron and friend Greg left our hosts farm well before opening time and it was still dark when we selected our position around the main lake having previously shot there other years. before we had even unpacked our guns there appeared hundreds of vehicle headlights in a continuous convoy swarming around the lake road and tracks , you could see the line of lights leading back out towards Durham Ox. The hunting protesters had arrived, no problems other years but that Year it was Boort's turn to be inconvenienced by the large group. In disappointment we returned back out west to the farm, on approaching I said to the boys pull over and we may pick up a couple of rabbits, in disgust they read the newspapers collected from town as I climbed through our hosts east boundary fence. I put up the fox in a dry channel and bagged it as it headed towards the timber in the photograph.
I was fortunate to have Cameron on hand to be able to record the event.
With no game and one vermin I still called the morning was a successful hunt.
While out walking the trusty beagle a couple of years back I came across this northern visitor on our local lake in the eastern suburbs of Melbourne. The Dandenong Ranges in the background as verification. He only stayed the one day being very nervous and justifiably suspicious of my intentions.
This is English Springer spaniel National field trial Champion Wrangham Faolan Ban, out on Gippsland lakes around 30 years ago, this bird was winged as it flew past our hide and glided along for around 500 metres, this wonderful hunting dog swam the 500 metres out and back and as he sat to present the bird to his handler the dozen or so hunters scattered along the swamp put their guns down, stood up and gave him a standing ovation.
Wooroonook lakes (Middle lake) in 2017. Within the hour we bagged our limit. Great shoot!
Hunting is all about family – by Ken Farmer
Some people ask me, who is the best duck hunter I have come across in all my years of hunting. Well the best hunter I know does not shoot or own a gun. The best duck hunter I know is also the best club man I know,
To some this picture is of no big deal but to Luke and I it was everything. This is Luke's first duck hunt, both of us never thought it would happen, but it did, it was the start of our partnership, and with the dog, my crew
Luke has and will always have Autism. Autism is a developmental disorder characterized by difficulties with social interaction and communication.
From an early age Luke has accompanied me through my time with Geelong Field and Game, this club along with Field and Game Australia have accepted Luke into their hearts,
From working bees with the club, both with nest boxes, planting trees and restoration work on wetlands. To add to this ground maintenance at the Connewarre Wetland Center. He has always been one of the first to put up his hand just to be part of what is happening around the club, he is without doubt the quintessential volunteer.
Hunters and hunting has been such a positive for Luke. His social interaction and sense of belonging have improved out of sight, and as with any disability, acceptance and self worth are paramount for esteem. Thanks to the members past and present, for being such help with his.
After working with Mervin Corn on many nights at our Duck ID coarse Luke became the expert at Duck Identification, and passed his test, AA, all done from memory, as his lack of fine motor skills making it difficult to write.
Luke was also voted Club Man of the year for 2016
As with most children with Autism Luke has sensory sensitivity, in short he has had the problem of loud noise sensitivity all his life. He wanted so much to go hunting, we overcame that problem with ear muffs, although he did not like them going hunting was more the priority, and he so wanted to be part of it. As long as he had his ear muffs with him he was ok.
On a cold May morning, we accompanied club hunting officer Peter Anderson to Cressy for his first shoot, this being our club shoot the Adam Leen memorial. We found a spot that was over grown with tussocks put out our decoys and waited. Although there were a few birds flying I had to keep reminding him, keep your head down don't move, the birds will see. We had a Black Duck fly into the decoys and I manged the shot, he was so excited, his first duck. We walked out to get it and he carried back talking all the time on what we had done right, and what to do when the next bird arrived. We moved latter to shoot the river and from there back to Tony Leens property for the results of the other members. I might just say that although we did not place, we were the winners that day.
Since our first time at Cressy we have crossed Victoria many time together, from Swan Hill to Sale we have hunted in all types of weather and conditions, rivers and wetlands. Through the good times and bad I have had my eagle-eyed partner calling out the birds at great distance. What type of duck, game or non-game, and how they can be told apart.
People complain about bag limits, start times, length of seasons and alike and when they do I think of my son Luke. He does not shoot or own a gun, but nobody loves being there more.