Government Proposes Hunting Season for Double-Crested Cormorants
Populations of double-crested cormorants appear to be increasing in number and distribution across Ontario’s shorelines. Where cormorant numbers are high, they can negatively affect terrestrial habitats by chemical and physical means through corrosive acidic guano, and stripping/breaking tree branches. In some cases, cormorant colonies have destroyed entire island ecosystems. Many people are also concerned about potential impacts on fish populations and angling opportunities.
The MNRF is proposing to establish a hunting season for cormorants from March 15 to December 31 with a bag limit of 50 birds/day and require hunters to use non-toxic shot. In principle, the government is planning to use hunters as a tool to reduce cormorant populations and mitigate their impacts on terrestrial habitats, aquaculture, and property values.
Primarily, the OFAH is pleased to see that the government is finally recognizing the problems caused by overabundant cormorants and are taking action.
Things to consider in your response:
- Bag limit
- Season timing and length
- Disposal of carcasses
- Are additional management efforts required?
Apr, 2016 Cormorant Concerns
Nov/Dec, 2015 OFAH calling for better cormorant control