THE 2021 duck hunting season will start on May 26, the Victorian government has announced.
The season will last 20 days, closing 30 minutes after sunset on June 14.
The Game Management Authority said hunting start times would be delayed until 8am for the first five days of the season.
Hunters would be restricted to a daily bag limit of two birds and would be prohibited from hunting the Blue- winged Shoveler across Victoria, and both the Grey Teal and Chestnut Teal north of the Princes Highway.
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But the RSPCA said it was urging the government to review its decision due to animal welfare concerns and lack of support in the community.
Duck hunting is banned in all states and territories except for Victoria, South Australia, Tasmania, and the Northern Territory.
RSPCA Victoria's chief executive Dr Liz Walker said there were evidence-based reasons why the 2021 season should not proceed.
"Duck hunting results in a substantial number of ducks being wounded, with some surviving, while others will suffer before eventually dying," Dr Walker said.
"We are disappointed that our recommendation to cancel the 2021 duck hunting season was not heeded.
"Another season will cause unnecessary injury, pain, suffering and death for hundreds of thousands of birds, and contribute to the ongoing decline of our waterbird population."
The government said arrangements for the 2021 duck season were based on analysis of habitat and waterbird surveys conducted across eastern Australia.
The GMA and partner agencies, including Victoria Police, would patrol both public lands and private properties to ensure compliance with hunting, animal welfare, and public safety laws.
All licensed hunters must pass a Waterfowl Identification Test before being permitted to hunt ducks.
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