Australia duck hunting is a continuation of unchartered waterfowling adventures provided exclusively by GetDucks.com, and like many of our other off-the-beaten-path destinations, duck hunting in Australia provides an immersive experience for only 1-3 guests per session in a laid back, highly-interpersonal atmosphere – guide-staff comfortably feels more like falling in among long-lost friends than staying in a bustling hotel.
Though the driest continent on earth, wet years result in astounding duck production. There is a rich tradition of duck hunting in Australia to include decoys, duck calls, and retrievers. Full of friendly and English-speaking duck hunters, Australia duck hunting is surprisingly more similar to hunting in the US than most other foreign destinations. Hunting primarily throughout the Victoria province, hunting among 2-3 locations ensure opportunities for the full variety of endemic Australian duck species to include: Pacific black ducks, grey teal, chestnut teal, maned duck, pink-eared duck, hardheads, Australian shovelers (pending seasonal availability), and Australian shelducks. In good wet years, the limit is an enviable 10 duck per day.
Hunts take place Monday-Friday, leaving weekends free for travel or sightseeing. The variety of habitats hunted include flooded and dry-field agriculture, rivers, stick pond swamps, and flooded green timber, usually using natural cover for concealment. A degree of mobility necessary for walking moderate distances is required to ensure the greatest hunting opportunities. Depending on seasonal timing and availability, upland birds, geese or big game might also be hunted.
Lodging varies among simple hotels and B&Bs along the way of your Australia duck hunting tour. Meals are a combination of casual local restaurants and home-cooked, everything from bacon cheese burgers (the locals love topping them with fried eggs, pineapple or beets) to lamb, beef steaks, Thai, pizza – your preference to include your own waterfowl as desired. Like duck hunting the world over, each morning begins well before daylight with a quick cup of coffee, driving one-half to an hour to the hunting area in time to set the decoys. Hunts last until limits are achieved, the ducks quit flying or the guest is ready; the hunt pace is completely customized to suit client needs.
Guests are received at the airport in Melbourne. A couple days spent in Melbourne preceding scheduled hunt dates may mitigate jet-lag. Australia duck hunting easily combines with New Zealand duck hunting for an excellent South Pacific waterfowling combo.
Australia duck hunting seasons are mid-March through mid-June (Victoria), mid-February through the end of June (South Australia). The rice mitigation season in New South Wales is October through mid-December.
Australia duck hunting packages are $850 per day, minimum 3 days. Five-day packages are suggested.
Australia duck hunting packages include:
Australia duck hunting packages do not include:
Australia duck hunting ranks very high among my list of worldwide destinations hunted. Friendly, English-speaking people with a long-standing tradition of duck hunting, liberal limits for unique species, interesting duck hunting environments (especially loved green-timber hunting the red river gum swamps), and surprises at every turn – from kangaroos bounding through the woods during walk-ins to discovering that “blackies” work mallard calls as well or better than mallards in the Deep South. Sure, they have a Crocodile Dundee accent and drive on the wrong side of the road, but those are too easily accept as part of a new adventure! Afterwards we hopped over to New Zealand to scratch off a few more South Pacific waterfowl species.
Special notes regarding duck hunting in Australia:
1. For as long as the guide-hunter ratio is 1:1, first-time Australia duck hunting visitors are exempt from taking the Game Management Authority’s Duck WISE exam when hunting in Victoria. It’s always required when hunting South Australia or New South Wales provinces. In these instances, guests should review study materials and practice test (to include Australia’s non-game waterbirds) preceding their scheduled Australia duck hunt and plan on taking the simple test upon arrival.
2. Semi-auto shotguns are prohibited in Australia. Guests may use an outfitter-provided O/U or import their own.
3. While the export of waterfowl is perfectly legal, an export permit is required and Australia bureaucrats have demonstrated reluctance in approving these permits with haste. Number of birds allowable for export is limited, and exact number is unknown. We and our associates are working with Australian authorities to sort this situation.