The Department of Primary Industries’ Game Licensing Unit (GLU) has revealed the majority of hunters are doing the right thing when it comes to obeying hunting regulations, following a series of operations carried out over the Easter long weekend on both public and private land across NSW.
GLU Compliance Officers, supported by NSW Police and other agencies, conducted high visibility proactive patrols on public and private lands in the New England, Liverpool Plains, Liverpool Ranges, Central West, Snowy Mountains and Monaro Regions over the extended Easter holiday period.
Director of Game Licensing, Dr Andrew Moriarty, said the operation involved 14 inspectors and around 60 patrol hours across NSW.
“Easter is traditionally our busiest time of year when the weather cools down and hunting and other recreational activity increases, particularly on public land like State forests,” Dr Moriarty said.
A large number of hunters were stopped for compliance checks with the majority fully compliant with hunting regulations and only minor administrative breaches detected.
Five illegal hunters were stopped whilst hunting at night in Maragle South State Forest near Tumbarumba, without a game hunting licence or permission. Three firearms, a quantity of ammunition and a spotlight were seized with further enforcement action to be taken.
“This result confirms what we have seen in previous years; that licensed, responsible hunters continue to have high rates of awareness and compliance with the regulations and only a small number of unlicensed individuals choosing to flout the rules,” Dr Moriarty said.
“The hunting regulations are in force to ensure that hunting is conducted safely and ethically to protect the community and to allow the activity to continue to contribute positively to rural and regional economies.”
Compliance operations over the extended Easter/ANZAC period will continue with NSW Police and other agencies. Attention will now turn to those illegal hunters who tend to surface after the long weekend crowds have dissipated.
Local communities are urged to report illegal hunting activity through the joint GLU and NSW Police program: Shut the Gate on Illegal Hunting. Reports can be made anonymously by calling Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000.