Australian Gun Culture Part 18: Queensland Cattle Station Shooter

By Dean Weingarten

Queensland Cattle Station Shooter
Queensland Cattle Station Shooter
Dean Weingarten
Dean Weingarten

Arizona -(Ammoland.com)- While attending the SSAA Shot Show in Brisbane, Australia, I met a shooter who related his experiences on a cattle station in northern Queensland.

He did not wish to be identified, but his story was convincing. There was some documentation and corroboration. I will call him Jeff.

About a decade ago, Jeff was involved in the development of a cattle station of over a hundred thousand acres, with thousands of cattle. In addition to the cattle, they grew crops. The station was remote.

It was described as having considerable area where no European had ever been known to have set foot. Attempting to make a living on the station was a constant battle with nature and the elements.

Wild pigs were numerous and did extensive damage. Crop losses were estimated at 20 percent, about $300,000 a year. Birds did enormous damage to the sorghum crop.

To control the bird damage, Jeff used a pair of Stirling .22 bolt action rifles, buying ammunition by the case (5,000) regularly. He said that he became quite a good shot with that sort of practice.

He used a surplus .303 Lee-Enfield for pig control. The bolt gun was too slow, with too small of a magazine capacity, especially for shooting from a vehicle. It took Jeff two years to obtain a permit to acquire a semi-automatic centerfire rifle.

Then it took him three months to find one for sale. He bought the first one that was available. It was a Chinese version of the SKS carbine, that uses the AK-47 type magazines, in 7.62X39. It proved to be a good choice. Jeff said that you purchased the ammunition that was in the store, and there was not a wide variety available.

Jeff described riding in a vehicle and seeing a dark line in the distance. It was a herd of over a hundred pigs.  They were more than a kilometer from cover. With the SKS and a 30 round magazine, Jeff was able to cull a large number, shooting as a passenger while racing the pigs to cover.

In heavy cover, one day, he shot a boar which charged him and his companions.  He was able to deliver fast, accurate fire from the SKS to stop the attack.  He estimated the boar's weight at 120 kilos, or 260 pounds.

Wild horses were numerous and a problem, doing considerable damage. The stallions could be aggressive. Jeff did not always carry the SKS or the Lee-Enfield on his surveying expeditions, where he was normally afoot.

One day he was treed by a wild stallion. After that, he was able to obtain a permit to carry a pistol with him on the cattle station. It was a .38 Taurus with an 8 inch barrel.

Eventually the losses from wild animals, birds, and unpredictable drought brought an end to the attempt at running the station. It was sold at close to break even.

Semi-automatic rifles were only allowed a permit for a year at a time. Two days after his semi-automatic permit expired, a pair of police were at Jeff's door. He was able to have the rifle stored at a gun store, but was unable to obtain an extension on the permit.

A few months later, Queensland had one of their gun amnesties/turn in events. On top of the pile of turned in rifles was an SKS variant that looked exactly like the rifle that Jeff had owned. He believes the gun store turned the rifle in to avoid problems with the authorities. Jeff could no longer legally possess the rifle. The government never compensated him for it.

When firearms may no longer be possessed, they can be stored at a gun shop. The gun shops generally charge about $25 to $35 per week. In only a few months, the entire value of the gun is eroded.

Because of the strict registration system, guns in Australia are only allowed to be possessed. If the government decides you no longer qualify, you may no longer possess the firearm, even if you still own it.

The Donald Eykamp case may decide if you can be allowed to sell the guns and obtain the proceeds, even if ordered by a court.

Jeff still owns the Stirling bolt action .22 rifles, the Lee-Enfield, and the Taurus revolver. The revolver is in storage while he applies for a renewed permit. He will have to join a club and shoot in at least four competitions a year to maintain his pistol permit.

Permits are obtainable. They are more easily obtainable if you are operating a hundred thousand plus acre cattle station.
©2017 by Dean Weingarten: Permission to share is granted when this notice is included.

Link to Gun Watch

 

About Dean Weingarten:

Dean Weingarten has been a peace officer, a military officer, was on the University of Wisconsin Pistol Team for four years, and was first certified to teach firearms safety in 1973. He taught the Arizona concealed carry course for fifteen years until the goal of constitutional carry was attained. He has degrees in meteorology and mining engineering, and recently retired from the Department of Defense after a 30 year career in Army Research, Development, Testing, and Evaluation.

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Jay CarterKlaus Von SchmittoKenGregory Peter DuPontJorgeNorberto Pedace Recent comment authors
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Jay Carter
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Jay Carter

Let’s clear a few things up about gun laws in Australia: • You can own guns and keep them in your home • You can own and use all types of actions and calibres, including semi-automatics – you just need the relevant licence. the standard icence is Category A and B, which is rimfires and centrefires of all actions except semi autos and pump shotguns • Semiautomatic and pump shotguns shotguns and semi-auto rimfires are Category C. You can get a Category C licence if you have a farm or shoot regularly on a farm or you have a disability… Read more »

JorgeNorberto Pedace
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JorgeNorberto Pedace

QUE HORRIBLE TENER QUE LUCHAR CONTRA DISTINTOS ELEMENTOS,Y NO TENER HERRAMIENTAS SUFICIENTES,TENIENDO QUE ARREGLÁRSELAS CON LO QUE SE PUEDA,CUALQUIER TIPO DE ARMA
USANDO LA MUNICIÓN QUE SE HALLE EN EL LUGAR,EN LUGAR DE TENER ACCESO A TODO Y SIN
RESTRICCIONES.

Gregory Peter DuPont
Guest
Gregory Peter DuPont

En Ingles,Por Favor!

Ken
Guest
Ken

THAT HORRIBLE HAVING TO FIGHT AGAINST VARIOUS ELEMENTS, AND DO NOT HAVE SUFFICIENT TOOLS, HAVING TO FIGURE IT OUT WITH WHAT YOU CAN, ANY KIND OF WEAPON
USING AMMUNITION THAT IS HALLE IN PLACE, RATHER THAN HAVING ACCESS TO EVERYTHING AND WITHOUT RESTRICTIONS.

Translation program, close enough

Ostlander
Guest
Ostlander

And to think Obama and the Clintons touted Australian style gun control for the U.S.A. Don’t ever let it get to that stage!

LeChat
Guest
LeChat

At one time, I have thought of going to Australia. No more.

Shrek
Guest
Shrek

Why wouldn’t you want to still come here for an amazing time on holiday? A country the size of the continential USA but with 1/13th the population. If you get away from the cities into the country people are extremely helpful, friendly and generous. A few parts of the story aren’t factally correct anymore. If you qualify you can obtain licences for centrefire semiauto’s (category D) for 5 years. Old Jeff should have renewed his licence for cat d before it expired. Weapons licencing send letters and emails 3 months beforehand. The onus is on the firearms licence holder and… Read more »

Klaus Von Schmitto
Guest
Klaus Von Schmitto

“If you qualify you can obtain licences for centrefire semiauto’s (category D) for 5 years……”

I don’t want to have to beg for permission to possess something that I own. I’d just rather walk into a store, but a rifle, take it home right then and keep it until I decide to sell it or give it to someone. You know – Like a free man.

joe martin
Guest
joe martin

I thank God I don’t live in Australia. I cherish my rights and what’s left of the dwindling freedoms I have here in the USA and work and pray for a return to a more free country here in America.

D Thater
Guest
D Thater

How ridiculously stupid and sad that a hard working man is subjected to bullshit laws and regulations such as this. Thank God that I live in the USA and that we have president Trump in charge…gads, what morons do they in control of Australia…how could that have happened,,,,,how.

Billl
Guest
Billl

Basically the two major parties are both socialist. The labor party is the more commie and the liberal national coalition is soft socialist. There are no major conserviative parties anymore. Thus gun control legislation was a bi-partisan agreement and so we were disarmed. Strangely though, the criminals and Moslems seem to have unfettered gun ownership because the port and airport security are riddled with these vermin. So guns can be bought into the country in pieces and reassembled at leisure.

Gregory Peter DuPont
Guest
Gregory Peter DuPont

This is one of the templates the elites would like to throw over the nation formerly known as The United States of America.

Dan the Man
Guest
Dan the Man

“Because of the strict registration system, guns in Australia are only allowed to be possessed. If the government decides you no longer qualify, you may no longer possess the firearm, even if you still own it.” Dean, it’s the same here in the USA. If you even get accused of a crime (felony, misdemeanor domestic violence, illegal drug use, etc..) you loose your gun “rights” and if your get convicted of a federal charge, you will loose them for life aside from an impossible to get presidential pardon. It’s no damn different. When you have “done your time” you are… Read more »