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Springvale Range
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Eagle Park Range
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Hunting and Pest Control
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victorian shooter

Leading Sports Shooting Body

The Sporting Shooters Association of Australia (Victoria) was incorporated as a public company on October 1, 1973. We exist to promote the shooting sports and protect firearm owners' interests.

With more than 36,000 members, SSAA Victoria is a leading body representing licensed firearm owners in Victoria. SSAA Victoria has more than a dozen branches and more than 30 sub-clubs and disciplines within the organisation.

SSAA Victoria News

At last, a fair go for shooters in the media

Rubbery figures in gun theft statistics have been called into question by SSAA Victoria prompting an investigation by Victorian agriculture newspaper, The Weekly Times, which has provided some long overdue balance to the issue. In it's story published on April 18, The Weekly Times reported Crime Statistics Australia statistics showing 739 firearm thefts in Victoria in 2016-17, which was dramatically up from 343 in 2009-10. Many news outlets gave Gun Control Australia chairman Samantha Lee a free kick to use the statistics to call for tighter gun storage laws. As usual, the facts were twisted to suit her anti-gun agenda with 43 air rifles, five imitation guns and 145 “other firearms” that are neither pistols, revolvers, shotguns nor rifles included in the figures. However, rather than take Lee's word for it, The Weekly Times checked with SSAA Victoria CEO, Jack Wegman, who pointed out that the basis for the CSA figures was questionable and suspected the dramatic increase in the figures was due to the "other firearms" which could include any type of “gun” such as glue, grease and nail guns. “How can firearm thefts just double from one year to the next and stay that way?” Mr Wegman said. “Obviously we want to know if the definition of a firearm was changed back then.” CSA and Victoria Police were unable to provide a breakdown of the figures, which would explain the massive jump, prompting an editorial by the story’s author, Peter Hunt, in the same edition. “There’s something rotten in the state of Victorian and NSW police crime statistics,” Mr Hunt wrote. “We all want to see strong, constructive gun regulations in place to protect our community. But let’s make sure our decisions are based on solid data, so we give responsible firearm owners a fair go,” he concluded, echoing SSAA Victoria’s motto. Mr Wegman said he was keen to see a follow-up after Mr Hunt reported he had been promised clarification of the anomaly. “The reporting of this issue has lacked balance or reason until The Weekly Times story and we’re hoping they get to the bottom of it,” he said. “More importantly we’re glad that at least one publication is seeking both sides of the argument rather than just going after sensational headlines. "For too long, mainstream media has given voice to the hysterical anti-gun lobby without seeking balance or facts and this is influencing government policy. "Australia has some of the tightest regulation on firearms in the world and law-abiding firearms owners are tired of being made the scapegoat and having their rights eroded away. "There needs to be a common sense review of the current laws to see what is still relevant or effective, but the anti-gun lobby is doing its best to make that impossible and most of the media is falling for it. "Groups such as GCA are duping the media into whipping up a frenzy of anti-gun sentiment by feeding it lies and exaggeration which go reported without investigation. How can we hope to have reasoned and sensible discussion on this issue amid this falsely manufactured public sentiment which then dictates government policy? "This is why we congratulate The Weekly Times for giving responsible people a fair go and setting a standard in balanced reporting that we hope will filter through to other Australian media outlets."

Shotgun workshop spots up for grabs

Duck hunters using steel shot have the chance to learn how to become better game bird hunters with the continuation of the Shotgunning Education Program practical workshops. The next workshop will be held on May 19-20 weekend at the Eagle Park’s Sporting Clays range, Little River, with an introductory course on the Saturday and an advanced course on the Sunday. Developed by SSAA Victoria, Field and Game Australia and the Victorian Government (Game Management Authority), the program is conducted by expert shooters. They provide practical and theoretical training to build hunter understanding of equipment, shooting skill level and hunting methods. “It’s all about improving hunting outcomes, so even people with plenty of experience will get something out of it,” said SSAA Victoria Hunting Development Manager, David Laird. The outcomes are to reduce wounding losses in game bird hunting by explaining the importance of pattern testing, chokes and loads. The GMA said poor shooting skill, the use of inappropriate load and choke combinations for non-toxic shot and poor distance estimation are the three contributing factors that increase the wounding rate of hunted birds. The workshop addresses these aspects of wounding by providing information and instruction to trainees on:
  • the use of appropriate choke and load for different hunting scenarios,
  • best practice for pattern testing choke and load combinations to determine lethal shooting distance and pattern density,
  • testing equipment limitations and personal shooting skills limitations; and
  • providing scenarios for distance estimation.
Cost is $150 for adults and $100 for juniors, which pays for up to 150 rounds of ammo, targets, a Tom Roster DVD and the improvement in hunting skills. Bookings are now open for the May 19-20 workshops via Evenbrite. For a spot in the INTRODUCTORY course, held Saturday May 19, click here. For the ADVANCED course, on Sunday May 20, click here. For more course information including booklet, visit www.gma.vic.gov.au/education/shotgunning-education

SSAA applauds GMA action on illegal deer hunters

SSAA Victoria has applauded the Game Management Authority (GMA) whose officers, together with Victoria Police, took action on illegal deer spotlighting around the Shelley area in Upper North-West Victoria over the long weekend. The Association's Hunting Development Manager, David Laird said SSAA Victoria fully supports action against five illegal hunters caught in the action and is active in helping to reduce unethical behaviour. "We were involved in a community meeting recently in Swifts Creek where there had been a spate of illegal behaviour to show we're committed to doing what we can to address this issue," he said. "Illegal hunting undermines the image and credibility of all hunters and puts political pressure on the sport, so we are doing what we can to prevent it and support the GMA and VicPol's efforts." GMA Chief Executive Officer Greg Hyams said officers targeted the Shelley-Koetong area for people committing spotlighting offences or hunting in prohibited areas such as private property and the pine plantations in the area. “Over the long weekend approximately 80 hunters and campers were spoken to by our compliance team,” Mr Hyams said. “Most hunters inspected were doing the right thing, however a few breaches were detected.” “A total of five men will face court proceedings after they were allegedly caught committing a number of hunting and firearm offences including; possession of spotlights and firearms in deer habitat, possession of suppressors, carrying loaded firearms on a public road and hunting without a Game Licence.” “A further two men also received official warnings for possession of firearm and spotlight while travelling along the Murray Valley Highway.” Mr Hyams said the GMA and Victoria Police will continue to work together to target illegal hunting in Victoria. “Illegal hunting and irresponsible behaviour can put people and wildlife at risk and damages the reputation of hunting,” Mr Hyams said. “Hunters need to make sure that they are familiar with the laws and are not illegally in possession of spotlights and firearms in deer habitat.” “The GMA together with its partner agencies will continue to conduct similar unannounced operations anywhere in the state at any time.” “Hunters are generally a law-abiding group but there are some who choose to do the wrong thing. Those who choose to break the law can be fined or prosecuted, have their equipment confiscated and lose their game and firearms licences.” Hunters and the public are urged to report any illegal hunting to the GMA through its website  or the Customer Service Centre on 136 186 or by contacting Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000, or Victoria Police.

New training manager appointed

SSAA Victoria has shown its commitment to improving firearms safety and skill with the appointment of a new training manager at Box Hill State Office. Fady Khalife, who has more than 10 years’ experience in the vocational education and training sector, joins the small team in Box Hill to develop shooting and hunting training programs. He takes on the role as Assistant Manager Training and Education, which was created within the Hunting Development department. “We believe training and education is the key to the future of the shooting sports and we are pleased to welcome a dedicated professional to this newly created role,” said SSAA Victoria CEO Jack Wegman. “As Victoria’s largest shooting organisation, our aim is to grow shooting sports in all disciplines in the State and this appointment was a key to achieving that.” Fady worked previously with TAFE and other well-known registered training organisations as a trainer and senior resource developer and said he’s happy to be bringing those skills to SSAA Victoria. “My job is to develop educational programs for firearms users to improve skill, knowledge and safety,” he said. “We will be offering courses for all levels of ability and for all firearms disciplines available through SSAA Victoria’s sub-clubs and branches.”
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