WINNIPEG, MANITOBA — Newfoundland has relaxed what was the most restrictive minimum-age requirement for hunters in North America.
Effective immediately, Newfoundland youths age 12 or older can hunt small game and ducks when accompanied by an adult, rather than waiting until age 16. Delta Waterfowl was at the forefront of the effort to pass the new rule, as part of its mission to ensure the tradition of waterfowl hunting in North America.
“Hats off to the Minister and staff of the Newfoundland and Labrador Department of Fisheries and Land Resources for working with Delta to bring about this important change,” said Jim Fisher, director of conservation policy for Delta Waterfowl. “We’re proud to have collaborated with local Delta volunteers to earn this important victory for the future of duck hunting.”
Delta’s voice in the region was strengthened in 2015 by the addition of the Sou’Wes Newfoundland Chapter in Port aux Basques. Chairman Mark Lomond kept Delta apprised of breaking developments, engaged local waterfowlers and partnered with Fisher to deliver letters to lawmakers in support of expanding youth hunting opportunities.
“Lowering the age requirement is an important move to bring Newfoundland in line with the rest of Canada,” Lomond said. “Delta volunteers and Newfoundland waterfowlers look forward to ushering in a new generation of younger hunters.”
Youth hunting opportunities are more restrictive in Canada than in the United States. Whereas 39 U.S. states have no age restrictions, most Canadian provinces require hunters to be 12 years or older. The Duck Hunters Organization believes that Canada’s declining waterfowl hunter numbers — including a 40 percent decrease in Newfoundland since 1980 — might be attributed, in part, to young people becoming involved in other activities prior to reaching the minimum age to try duck hunting.
“Newfoundland’s youngsters couldn’t hunt ducks until they were nearly adults,” said Fisher, who also recently aided the effort to lower Manitoba’s youth hunting age from 12 to 10. “This change will encourage plenty of new duck hunters to get out and enjoy the province’s ruggedly beautiful, wild landscape.”
For more information, contact Jim Fisher at (877) 667-5656 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Delta Waterfowl Foundation is The Duck Hunters Organization, a leading conservation group working to produce ducks and ensure the tradition of duck hunting in North America.