An online survey by Australian firearms experts found that Australians are buying cheaper than they were five years ago.
The survey of about 7,000 Australians found that in 2015, Australians were spending $3,945 on gun purchases, compared to $3.839 in 2014.
But, it found, the gap is narrowing as Australian buyers buy more guns with the same number of bullets.
Mr Smith said that “if you buy more than three or four bullets, then it makes a big difference”.
“In the past we’d had a lot of people buy multiple rifles and shotguns in one go,” he said.
“Now we’ve got a couple of big guns that you’d never buy if you were buying for yourself.”
We’re finding that people are buying guns with multiple bullets and we’re finding a lot more people are choosing to buy a rifle rather than a shotgun.
“There’s a lot fewer people who are buying the smaller guns, the smaller calibre rifles.”
What that tells me is people are more likely to buy the smaller ones if they’re in a situation where they want a gun that’s lighter, cheaper and has more bullets.
“They’ll buy a shotgun if they want to shoot some big game or if they just want a big gun with a lot less recoil and a longer barrel.”
Mr Smith told ABC Radio National that while the gun buying rate had dropped over the last five years, there was still a lot going on in the industry.
“We have a new breed of firearm owner who is more likely than others to be buying guns that they are not necessarily very keen on buying, or that they’re buying with a different mindset,” he told AM.
“What that does is it’s not just the people who’ve made a career out of buying guns, but the people that are buying firearms for the first time, that they don’t necessarily have an issue with.”
So we’re seeing a lot in that market that people might not have before.
“It’s a reflection of the fact that it’s the people buying guns who are making the biggest difference.” “
I think it’s good to see that gun ownership is going down and I think it really shows how serious people are taking it,” he added.
“It’s a reflection of the fact that it’s the people buying guns who are making the biggest difference.”
The survey also found that the percentage of people who bought guns for the purpose of self-defence or self-protection increased from 6.4 per cent in 2015 to 6.6 per cent this year.
“That’s up from 5.3 per cent last year,” Mr Smith explained.
“A lot of that is down to people taking it out for themselves.”
He said the number of people owning firearms for personal defence had risen over the same period.
“So, for example, last year it was about 20,000 guns, and this year it’s about 42,000, so that’s an increase of a lot,” he explained.
Mr Hulett said the majority of the gun owners he met were people with firearms for self-defense, or for self defence to protect their loved ones.
“You’re seeing more people getting involved in shooting sports, more people taking guns to self- defence and a lot are doing it for sport,” he noted.
“In terms of shooting sports it’s pretty widespread, there are about 300 shooting sports in Australia.”
Mr Harris said the biggest gun owners in Australia were those with a “longer barrel”.
“They’ve got some really long barrels and some really small barrels and they’ve got them in the home and they’re putting them in there and it’s going to shoot a lot better,” he remarked.
“And then, if they do the same for hunting, they’re also going to be able to put a lot faster than a smaller gun, which will shoot faster.”
The gun owners polled by the Australian Institute of Criminology (AIC) said that gun owners were also spending a lot on new equipment.
“When you go and buy a new gun, it’s very expensive,” Mr Harris told AM, “so you might want to spend $5,000 to get the gun you want.”
He also said that a lot people were buying more ammunition, saying “a lot of shooters have bought lots of extra magazines and they don, and they know that’s a good thing to have in case they have to shoot somebody else”.
“There are a lot and a good amount of people are just going to get their gun in the mail and they’ll put it in the gun case and go,” Mr Humpherysaid.
“People have to be careful when they buy a gun, because they might get into trouble if they don.”
It’s going down because of what we’re doing to the firearms industry, because we’re making the laws more restrictive,” he concluded.
Mr Harris is not the only one to have questioned the effectiveness of Australia’s gun laws.
Last year, a former federal