birding-aus Re: culled

To: <>
Subject: birding-aus Re: culled
From: "Peter Waanders" <>
Date: Wed, 18 Aug 1999 09:17:44 +0930

Hi all,

Remember that the SA govt recently lifted the ban on shooting native rosellas, parrots etc.? I got a reply to my email to the SA minister for environment. It's full of political half-truths and "comfort-zone" talk and the most striking argument I found was the following:

By removing the requirement for destruction permits in some areas, we become more strategic in our approach to management for conservation, thus strengthening our efforts to conserve all species   

You can find the full text of the reply below.
Peter Waanders


Dear Mr Waanders

Thank you for your e-mail dated 21 July 1999 to the Premier of South Australia, Hon John Olsen MP, regarding the removal of the requirement for destruction permits for common native parrots causing damage to commercial orchards in a number of districts. As this matter is the responsibility of my portfolio as Minister for Environment and Heritage, the Premier has asked that I respond on his behalf.

Removal of the requirement to have a destruction permit is not an indiscriminate act. Exemptions from permit are specific to musk lorikeets, rainbow lorikeets, Adelaide rosellas and yellow rosellas. These species may only be taken within the local government areas of: Adelaide Hills, Alexandrina, Barossa, Gawler, Kapunda and Light, Marion, Mitcham, Mount Barker, Onkaparinga, Playford, Tea Tree Gully, Victor Harbor, Yankalilla, Berri and Barmera, Loxton Waikerie, Mid Murray, Murray Bridge and Renmark Paringa. Birds may only be shot under circumstances where they are causing damage to commercial orchards and vineyards and the only persons authorised to do so are the landowners and their employees or agents. In addition, the shooting of birds must not contravene the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act 1985 and the Code of Practice for the Humane Destruction of Galahs and Little Corellas by Shooting, the latter available from National Parks and Wildlife South Australia and local council offices. A species identification pamphlet will be available for orchardists to distinguish between exempt and non-exempt species.

It is important to recognise that the species to which the exemptions apply are very common and cause significant damage to commercial orchards and vineyards in these areas. The taking of other protected bird species or these birds outside of the above conditions without a destruction permit is still illegal and people doing so will be subject to prosecution.

An appropriate strategy to minimise the damage caused to a fruit crop is to implement a scaring, "reinforced by shooting" program before bird damage becomes widespread within the crop. Removing the requirement for destruction permits will enable commercial orchardists to act quickly and implement a damage control campaign. Depending on economic feasibility, region and the species targeted, this approach must be integrated with other techniques such as netting, visual scaring methods, trapping by professionals, timing of maturing crops, orchard location and the planting of decoy crops.


Since shooting is an adjunct to a scaring program rather than simply a means of reducing bird numbers, it is anticipated that the current initiative will not noticeably impact upon the populations of the species exempted from destruction permits. Growers will only attempt shooting during the time that buds are forming or fruit is maturing and the birds are causing damage to crops.

The removal of the requirement for destruction permits was carefully planned and considered with a view to improving the State’s management for the conservation of native species by:

  1. preventing the concentration of birds on orchards by enabling orchardists to implement scaring and shooting programs when birds first arrive, thus maximising early deterrent capabilities while minimising the number of bird deaths;
  2. enabling National Parks and Wildlife South Australia and orchardists to establish a cooperative approach to pest native bird management by having practical and integrated management systems that are sensitive to more vulnerable species and that provide sustainable long-term strategies; and
  3. removing an administrative requirement that was time-consuming and costly while not serving a conservation outcome.

Controlling damage to crops by taking those species to which this action applies is not new, destruction permits were previously approved as a matter of course when damage was occurring. By removing the requirement for destruction permits in some areas, we become more strategic in our approach to management for conservation, thus strengthening our efforts to conserve all species.

Thank you for your correspondence on this matter.

Yours sincerely



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