Species of Game

​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​This page has information relating to specific species of game in Tasmania and the regulations around hunting them. It also highlights any monitoring that occurs for each species which recreational hunters may assist with​.
 
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Fallow Deer

Regulation Snapshot:

  • ​a Category B endorsement is required on Tasmanian Minor's permits or firearms licence when an applicant is purchasing a recreational game licence for deer

  • deer may only be taken with a legal firearm with a minimum calibre of not less than 6mm, which is capable of delivering a projectile having kinetic energy of 1350 joules at a distance of 100 metres from the rifle. It is suggested a calibre .243 or greater be used

  • the head of a deer must not be removed or the body severed at a place other than the usual residence of the recreational game licence holder, unless the recreational game licence holder labels all the parts with their name, address, deer licence number and tag number

  • a hunter must immediately tag each adult male deer they take with the official tag issued to them with their recreational game licence

  • when taking adult male deer fix and lock the tag to the antler between the brow tine and the trez tine

  • a hunter must keep a record of the number of antlerless female deer and adult male​ they harvest during the gazetted deer season, and provide this to the Department as a part of their game take return
Please note there have been changes made to the antlerless fallow deer season commencing on 14 March 2020.  Please see Game Services Tasmania website for further information.

 

Public Land Deer Hunting Ballot (Central Hig​​hlands Dee​​​r Ballot)

Information about the ballot process, and the areas included, is available on the Public Land Deer B​allot page​​​​​​​​.​​

​Wallab​y

Hunting on private land: Crop protection permit issued by DPIPWE to landowner and onforwarded to hunters.
Hunting on Crown land: Completion of Firearm Licence Holders Permission Document
Hunting on State forest: Contact your nearest Forestry Tasmania office.
Hunting on conservation areas: Contact your nearest Parks and Wildlife Service Field Centre to the area you wish to hunt.

Regulation Snapshot:

  • the use of snares and steel-jawed traps is prohibited

  • the use of spotlights and shooting from a vehicle are prohibited

  • a landholder can obtain a crop protection permit to allow shooting from a vehicle on their property with the aid of a spotlight

  • a landholder may issue a copy of their crop protection permit to hunters which allows them to assist in the control of game and browsing animals

  • any adult female wallaby taken must be examined for pouch young, which should be humanely killed without delay
The Wildlife Management Branch does not require take information from wallaby game licence holders. The wallaby harvest is monitored using property specific take figures from wallaby crop protection permit holders.
 
Property owners, managers, their immediate family members or full-time employees are exempt from the requirement of a recreational wallaby game licence, however they are required to hold a current crop protection permit

​​Arrange an Org​anised Shoot Permit (15 or more hunters)

Day time hunting usually involves a group of licenced hunters with trained dogs who flush wallabies from bush areas to control browsing animals. 

By completing the Arrange an Organised Shoot application form you can arrange a permit for your party to undertake this hunting activity.​

  Arrange an Organised Shoot   (778Kb)

Rabbits and Hares

Rabbits and hares are classified as vermin under the Vermin Control Act 2000 and may be hunted at any time. There are normally taken with shotguns and rimfire rifles, although any non-prohibited firearm may be used with the appropriate licences. There is no bag limit.

Wild D​​uck

Tasmania has a number of species of waterfowl but only five may be hunted during the open game season. 
These are: 
  • chestnut teal
  • grey teal
  • wood duck
  • mountain duck
  • black duck
All other species must not be shot.

Regulation Snapshot:

  • decoys, including feathered decoys, are permitted when taking ducks in Tasmania, but the use of any bait, live birds, tape recorders or other electronic devices is prohibited

  • the use of boats propelled by an engine is prohibited when taking ducks

  • the use of aircraft for rousing ducks is prohibited

  • ducks may only be taken with shotguns not exceeding 12 gauge

  • duck hunters are not permitted to use lead shot when hunting over wetlands, lakes, dams, harbours,estuaries, lagoons, rivers, creeks, canals or other watercourses, whether on public or private property

  • hunters must retain either the head or the wings on a harvested duck until the hunter has arrived at their normal place of residence, shack or camp

  • hunters must produce their Waterfowl Identification Test (WIT) Certificate the first time they purchase a recreational game licence to hunt duck. Thereafter verification will occur via the game licence database 

​Public Land Duck Hunting

Licenced duck hunting is permitted during the gazetted season on various Reserves.  At the beginning of each gazetted season the Department releases a Public Notice of the Reserves.

  Ducks 2019 Public Reserves   (267Kb)​

Hydro Tasmania Land Duck Hunting

Licenced duck hunting is permitted during the gazetted season on various blocks of Hydro Tasmania land​.

Monitoring Duck Po​​pulations

Each February since 1985 the Department carries out a state-wide count of waterbirds with assistance from the Parks and Wildlife Service and many volunteers. These counts are not an attempt to count all of the ducks in the state but rather to get an index of trends in the populations.

A sample of 80 wetlands, of a variety of types, (e.g. farm dams to estuaries) are counted each year and the number of ducks seen gives an indication of whether duck numbers have increased or decreased. This information is then graphed, to indicate trends in the populations.
 
The graphs are available as the State-wide Waterbird Survey:

Duck Harvest Data Form

Hunters can assist The Wildlife Management Branch with input into future management and research of wild duck in Tasmania by completing the Duck Season Harvest Data Sheet. Any samples provided will be automatically made available to the Health Laboratories for Avian Influenza testing. Return details are provided on the form.

The use of non-toxic shot for hunting wild duck over wetlands in Tasmania

Duck hunters are not permitted to use lead shot when hunting over any public or private water or watercourse. 
Examples would include:
  • wetlands
  • lakes
  • dams 
  • harbours 
  • estuaries 
  • lagoons
  • rivers
  • creeks
  • canals 
Wildlife Rangers are equipped with devices to differentiate between lead shot and non-toxic shot.

Heavy metals pose serious environmental and health dangers. Exposure to lead in the environment can cause a build-up of this metal in our bodies and cause serious health problems. Waterfowl are no different. This is why it is so important to ensure that lead does not end up in sediment where ducks are likely to feed. 
 

Tasmanian Duck Avian Influenza Survey

DPIPWE's Health Laboratories continue to call for biological samples from harvested ducks throughout the year to test for avian influenza. The collection of duck samples is not mandatory.

If you are interested in assisting you can find more information on the avian influenza pages.
 

Brown Q​​​uail

Three species of native quail are known in Tasmania:
  • stubble quail
  • painted quail
  • brown quail
Only Brown quail can be taken during the open game season.

Other species of game birds such as partridge and bobwhite quail have been introduced to Tasmania. These species have been released under permit to properties specifically for hunting.

Hunters are encouraged to complete a brown quail survey record sheet to assist in the monitoring of brown quail populations throughout the state
 

  Brown Quail Record Sheet   (169Kb) 

View the leaflet on the Management of Brown Quail in Tasmania
 

Common P​​heasant

Regulation Snapshot:

  • the open game season applies only to male birds on King Island
  • pheasants may only be taken with a shotgun not exceeding 12 gauge.
To obtain a licence, hunters are encouraged to:
  • become a member of the King Island Game Bird Association 0428 611 254
  • ensure you have permission to access land for hunting
 

Shor​​t-Tailed Shearwater (Muttonbird)

The muttonbird is partly protected wildlife under the Wildlife (General) Regulations 2010.    It is subject to harvesting by licensed harvesters during an annual open season determined under the Nature Conservation (Open Seasons) Order, 2004

Regulation Snapshot:

  • the use of pointed, sharpened, barbed, hook shaped, or sharpened implements is prohibited.

  • interfering with muttonbird burrows during the closed season or without a licence during the open season is prohibited.

  • a recreational game licence is issued to one person only. The taking of muttonbirds under another person's licence (including that of a family member) is illegal.

  • chicks are to be killed quickly and humanely in accordance with the Animal Welfare Act 1993.

The following information sheet provides details of colonies that are open to harvest and is mailed to the previous season's licence holders each year

  Short-Tailed Shearwater (muttonbird) Hunting Season and Colony Information   (847Kb)

To assist in the management of the muttonbird harvest monitoring occurs on four Islands in the Furneaux Island Group. See the results of the latest short-tailed shearwater survey:

  Short-Tailed Shearwater Survey   (221Kb)


Forms and Information Sheets

Antlerless Harvest Data sheets
Buck Harvest Data sheet
Suspicous Incident Record

Contact

Game Services Tasmania
GPO Box 44
Hobart TAS 7000
Phone: 03 6165 3225
Email: gameservicestas@dpipwe.tas.gov.au

Wildlife Management Branch
Permits and Licensing
GPO Box 44
Hobart TAS 7001
Phone: 03 6165 4305
Fax: 03 6173 0253
Email: wildlife.reception@dpipwe.tas.gov.au