Re: birding-aus Mallards etc.

Subject: Re: birding-aus Mallards etc.
Date: Wed, 5 Jan 2000 15:14:19 +1000

My understanding is that we should be concerned about Mallards being released to
the wild, as they can and do interbreed with our Pacific Black Ducks.  It is
true that the introgression of Mallard genes into the Black Duck population has
not yet created the problems that can be seen in New Zealand, but I do not
believe that there is any room for complacency.  This is an insidious problem,
with unknown consequences.  It may not be a significant issue, but we do not
know.  Therefore, the precautionary principle would suggest that Mallards be
removed from where they have been illegally released into the wild (in Victoria,
it is an offence under the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act to release
domestic animals to the wild.)  I would encourage anybody concerned about this
issue to make local councils aware of the matter.  Some local councils in
Victoria have undertaken to remove Mallards from ornamental lakes, out of
concern about possible hybridisation with native species.




Ian Temby, 1999 Churchill Fellow

Wildlife Damage Control Officer

Secretary/Treasurer, BIRDS Australia Parrot Association

Flora & Fauna Program

Department of Natural Resources and Environment

4/250 Victoria Parade



Phone          613 9412 4429
Fax       613 9412 4586

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