Fundraiser Ron relishes the controversy of his boar hunt
RON Owen's big worry was finding all that apple sauce.
"We've had a lot of fun already," the Gympie gun enthusiast said as he savoured the controversy from his Gympie pig-hunting championships on the weekend.
Having outraged some animal liberationists and raised about $10,000 for the families of veteran soldiers (through the SAS Association's Wandering Warriors charity), Mr Owen was enjoying some unexpected support from animal lovers.
Green Party candidate Joy Ringrose joined real estate identity Graham Engeman in defending the humane credentials of Mr Owen's Big Boar Hunting Championships, also supported by Gympie MP David Gibson.
Mr Owen says "animal liberationists" have stolen and defaced his original promotional sign, altering it to read, "Queensland Redneck Hunting Championships."
He says they underestimate the cruelty of the 1080 baiting alternative and the decency of a well-aimed, species-specific bullet.
And he says his tormentors possibly do not realise their own consumer role in animal slaughter.
"Dead pigs go in one end of a chipper and pellets come out the other. The fat is rendered down and ends up as lotions and cosmetics," he said.
About 350 entrants are competing for $20,000 worth of prizes, with presentations starting at 4pm tomorrow.
Mr Owen predicts that the weigh-in, behind his McMahons Rd gun shop, will be the setting for a large pile of dead pigs, the only non-feral one being the one on the spit.
Now, about that apple sauce...
Name of event: The Queensland Big Boar Hunting Championships
Obstacles: Promotional sign stolen by "animal liberationists" - later re-displayed with wording altered to read "Queensland Redneck Hunting Championships"
Total prize value: $20,000
Entries: About 350 by close of entries on Thursday afternoon.
Legal requirements: Hunting is allowed only on suitably large private properties, with permission of the owner.
Categories: Largest pig's ear, largest boar, longest tail, "Miss Piggy" biggest sow and others.
Hunting styles: Guns, bow and arrow, dogs and knives.
Beneficiaries: Families of war veterans, via the SAS Queensland Association's Wandering Warriors charity, which has no paid positions and raises money only for families of veterans.