Wellington Weekly Hunting Report 10th May 2018
Great start to the season for some!
Right: Perseverance pays off - four fat mallards before 9 o'clock on Opening morning (Photo Hamish Carnachan).
It was great to see so many happy hunters over Opening Weekend!
The good numbers of birds around certainly played a part in that and rangers encountered far more bag limits taken than in many previous Openings.
The weather wasn't quite right over the first weekend of the season but those that stuck it out got some great shooting.
One young Wairarapa hunter was reported in a newspaper saying he gave up after the first hour which was a bad move because the birds came on later, particularly on Saturday evening and Sunday morning when the wind whipped up.
Rangers checked over hundreds of licences over the weekend and the sentiment was overwhelmingly positive about the start to the season, and the hunting that lies ahead.
This weekend the weather looks superb for hunting and many shooters will treat it as the second Opening, meaning that there'll be plenty of guns to move birds around as well as the conditions.
Get into it - the action has been awesome.
Ensure you have your licence on you, practice safe firearms use at all times and know the regs for 2018.
If you haven't already done so, get your licence here - the best of the season is still to come.
Here are the prospects for the weekend:
|Patchy rain with strong northerlies developing
|Rain and a southeast change before winds tend stronger northeast.
|More rain, northeasterlies building during the day.
|Occasional rain with northerlies.
|Rain setting in and easterlies develop.
|Periods of rain, northeasterly winds.
|Scattered light rain with strong northerlies.
|Widespread rain and gusty northerlies.
|Periods of rain, northeasterlies.
Three day rain forecast
For the latest rain forecast click here
|Friday, May 11, 9am.
|Saturday, May 12, 9am.
|Sunday, May 13, 9am
Opening Weekend ranging update
Two of the ranging teams working on the Manawatu side over Opening Weekend having a well-deserved break (Photo Matt Kavermann)
Wellington Fish & Game put in one of the strongest compliance efforts it's had in many years over Opening Weekend.
And it paid off too, with scores of licences checked, seven shotguns seized and several offence notices to follow up.
Police and Fish & Game are also looking to follow up two incidents in which hunters fled from rangers - one case in Manawatu and another at Kahutara in South Wairarapa.
Fleeing from warranted rangers is treated as obstruction, a serious offence that carries with it a three-year prison term and/or $100,000 fine.
That's a stupid mistake for the sake of a $94 licence and playing by the rules - sticking to bag limits and using approved shot.
Fortunately, the vast majority of hunters were compliant and happy to see the ranging teams.
Remember our ranging effort doesn't end after Opening Weekend - there will be a strong focus through the duration of the season so please ensure you have your licence on you.
- Eastern Lake Wairarapa Access: The issue around quad access to the eastern shore of Lake Wairarapa has been miscommunicated, and we apologise for any confusion caused. To clarify: DOC has only closed quad access to Boggy Pond, Matthews Lagoon and through the Wairio Wetland at this stage.
- White Swan At Wairio: Ducks Unlimited has released two white swan (which are pinioned) at the Wairio Block, Lake Wairarapa. A reminder to hunters that it is illegal to shoot these birds.
Safe start to season
Wellington Fish & Game is urging hunters to take utmost care this game bird hunting season. Please refresh yourself with the seven golden rules of firearms safety below:
1. TREAT EVERY FIREARM AS LOADED
- Check every firearm yourself.
- Pass or accept only an open or unloaded firearm.
2. ALWAYS POINT FIREARMS IN A SAFE DIRECTION
- Loaded or unloaded, always point the muzzle in a safe direction.
3. LOAD A FIREARM ONLY WHEN READY TO FIRE
- Load the magazine only after you reach your hunting area.
- Load the chamber only when ready to shoot.
- Completely unload before leaving the hunting area.
4. IDENTIFY YOUR TARGET BEYOND ALL DOUBT
- Movement, colour, sound and shape can all deceive you.
- Assume colour, shape, sound, and shape to be human until proven otherwise.
5. CHECK YOUR FIRING ZONE
- THINK! What may happen if you miss your target? What might you hit between you and the target or beyond?
- Do not fire if you know others are in your firing zone.
6. STORE FIREARMS AND AMMUNITION SAFELY
- When not in use, lock away the bolt, firearm and ammunition separately.
- Never leave firearms in a vehicle that is unattended.
7. AVOID ALCOHOL AND DRUGS WHEN HANDLING FIREARMS
- Good judgement is the key to safe use of firearms.
*This report was accurate at time of writing - please ensure you check the latest weather information before you head out.