NZ Duck Calling Championships - Winners
SOUTH ISLAND FINALIST QUACKS HIS WAY TO WORLD CHAMPS IN U.S.
Central Otago local Hunter Morrow has quacked his way to glory in the finals of the national duck calling championships.
More than 20 duck callers from around New Zealand gathered at Loaded NZ clay shooting range just outside Tauranga on July 9 to take part in the quack-off, for the grand prize of a trip to compete in the world championships in the U.S.
They had 60 seconds to blow a greeting, pleading and feed call plus a lonesome hen call.
Winner Hunter Morrow, a building apprentice from Luggate, came 5th in the world champs last year, told reporters that calling had been a “weird obsession” since he was a little boy.
“I’ve been hunting ducks since I was a little kid and calling is just part of it.”
And travelling to the world champs had been a dream come true, “to compete against my duck-calling idols.”
“To go again is pretty damn cool – it’s a great opportunity to take things to the next level again and have a go at winning the world champs.”
Organiser Adam Rayner says he’s ecastatic with the way the finals went, adding that his plan is to hold the event in the South Island next year.
Mr Rayner says two young teenage callers – 13 year-old Ritson Galloway from Woodville and 14 (?) year old Holly Irvine from Nelson – made an impact, taking fourth and fifth spots in the national championships.
“Ritson and Holly did well to place so well – they were competing against skilled and experienced adults and deserved to finish in the top five,” Adam Rayner says.
He says the standard of calling from all finalists was “absolutely fabulous.”
Duck calling judge John Meikle, a Rotorua Fish & Game Officer, agreed, saying the quality of calling from the finalists was “top end.”
He says that it was a hard fought contest and the judges had some “very rigorous” discussions on their way to picking Hunter Morrow as the winner.
Mr Meikle says many of those taking part are passionate callers and hunters, some of whom sell small products such as duck call lanyards, produced from home businesses, to help meet the cost of their hunting expenses. The top prize was a trip to compete in the world champs but runners-up received a range of prizes from waterfowling clothing and caps to magazine subscriptions and duck callers.
Visit Facebook to see the winners in action: