Animal Activists Sight Up Tasmanian Bow Hunters

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Last week two wallabies were found in southern Tasmania with target arrows protruding from them. This resulted in widespread outrage and saw the activists looking for innocent targets.

The activists set their sights on Hunting Tasmania who advertises on Facebook, saying it caters for deer trophy and meat hunters, including for bow hunters.

Bowhunting is not permitted in Tasmania for the purpose of taking fallow deer when in season. 

Wallaby found with target arrow

"Come and hunt on our private 2,000-acre block, everything from trophy bucks to the meat hunter, also catering for bow hunters," the page says.

The ABC reported business owner Andrew Hooper declined to comment apart from saying that he followed all the rules and regulations required by the State Government and had the necessary documentation.

The ABC is not suggesting the business was in any way responsible for the shooting of the wallabies.

Greg Irons from Bonorong Wildlife Sanctuary said there was a legal loophole which allowed for hunting deer with a bow and arrow on a farm.

"It's not just something that upsets me, it makes me furious to think that people are legally allowed to shoot an animal with a bow and arrow and pay for the privilege. It's just disgraceful," he said.

Brightside Farm Sanctuary's Emma Haswell agreed.

"Do we have a law that says you can't hunt animals with a bow and arrow in Tasmania or do we allow people to do it if they pay enough money?"

The Department of Primary Industries, Parks, Water and Environment said bow hunting was not permitted in Tasmania for the purpose of taking wild fallow deer.

Information about the code of practice relating to the hunting of wild fallow deer is available on the DPIPWE website.

The Department said the appropriate authorities would follow up with the administrators of the Facebook page.

It is unclear whether Hunting Tasmania farms its own deer, and Tasmanian Parks and Environment Minister Peter Gutwein said it was being investigated.

Mr Gutwein said he did not think it was "acceptable to be shooting anything with a bow and arrow". 

"I want to make it perfectly clear … hunting with a bow and arrow in Tasmania for the taking of wildlife is illegal."

Mr Irons said regardless of the species he would urge all Tasmanians to think about what an animal goes through when it is shot with a bow and arrow and make a stand.

"Make a call speak to your local politicians and make a stand because this is unacceptable and has to be stopped immediately," he said.

He asked people to consider what he called the wombat test.

"Can we go and shoot a wombat with a bow and arrow? No. People would be horrified if we said someone shot a wombat with a bow and arrow for sport and paid for it," he said.

But Mr Irons said because it was deer and considered food, it came under a different set of rules.

"If it shouldn't happen for a wombat, it shouldn't happen for anything else," he said.

The wombat test is a new one for me, and if wombats were legal to hunt, I'm sure many would answer yes to wombat test. Tasmanian hunters have it stacked against them with a strong anti agenda being pushed from every corner.

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