Mr D O’BRIEN (Gippsland South) (09:40): I rise to pay tribute today to Sale’s Gary ‘Pud’ Howard for his Order of Australia Medal announced in the Queen’s Birthday honours for services to conservation and the environment. A successful local businessman, Pud has been a member of Sale Field and Game for more than 50 years and has dedicated his life to the conservation of wetlands, particularly in the Sale area. A former national president of Field and Game Australia, he has been particularly active in the rehabilitation of the Heart Morass, just near Sale. On any given day you will find Pud out at the site, fixing this, planting that, checking on water levels and generally making the place better. As a duck hunter, he is committed to the notion that hunters must conserve the habitat and populations of the species they hunt. In this contentious area I have no doubt Pud has done more for the conservation of native waterbirds than most of the bleeding heart opponents of hunting put together. This is a well-overdue and well-deserved recognition of his work in this area.

Congratulations also to Dr Margaret Rowe of Leongatha, who was also awarded an OAM for services to the environment.

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