Wellington Weekly Hunting Bulletin - 01 June 2023
Pictured right: A sheltered Wairarapa pond holding excellent numbers of mallards (Credit: Hamish Carnachan)
A Tough Week But Better Hunting Weather On The Way
Hunters have had a tough week. Ducks are starting to wise up from the pressure, and the weather has just been a little too settled to get them moving off the big water.
Those who have snuck out for quick early-morning shoot have done okay, often catching birds passing on their way to feeding grounds - there is still plenty of flooded pasture and late-harvest grain around.
Evening shoots have been challenging, likely due to the recent full moon which has allowed the ducks to fly well after hunting hours.
This weekend should see a shift in hunters' fortunes.
The moon is well on the wane, and a good nor-wester is building.
The wind is forecast to be very strong this afternoon with variable conditions expected to follow over the long weekend.
With King's Birthday affording an extra day off it's a great opportunity to mix your hunting up, try something new, even take a mate or someone new out for a quick shoot.
There's still a month of waterfowl hunting to go, with the best weather likely to come this month, so if you haven't been out yet, grab a licence and get into it.
Here's the outlook for this weekend...
Weekend Weather Outlook
The brighter the colour the stronger the wind (Credit: Windy.com)
The Windy screen shot shows a decent west to nor-west flow for Friday following building winds today.
This backs off as we head into Saturday but comes back strongly on Sunday, shifting during the day from west to a north then nor-east direction.
The big change in quarter should see birds moving in the afternoon and into the early evening offering great hunting opportunities.
The public holiday on Monday doesn't throw up such encouraging conditions unfortunately but it would be a good day to stretch the legs and look at jump shooting small farm dams, drainage ditches or backwaters.
Such hunting is great for introducing someone new to the pursuit as there's generally some fast action and always a change of scenery.
Tip Of The Week - Hunting With Kids
Getting your kids out for a short hunt, whether it's sitting in the maimai or walking up on farm dams, is a super fun and rewarding experience.
Even kids brought up in an urban environment have an inherent desire to venture out, and an instinct to hunt, fish and gather.
There are, however, some key tips to making hunting with your kids a success. This short article from Hunting & Fishing offers some great advice.
Family Hunting Photo Comp
The Whitaker family all camoed up on Opening Morning 2023 (Credit: Dan Whitaker)
We're on the look out for your family hunting photos.
Flick them through to us and the best shot at the end of the season will win $200 worth of Hunting & Fishing NZ clothing, courtesy of Greg and the team at Wairarapa Hunting & Fishing in Masterton.
Photos can be of groups or individuals hunting, but the main criteria is that it is about families and family members, especially highlighting kids' love of the pursuit.
Please remember firearms safety when framing your pics - breaches cleared and actions open, kids closely supervised around firearms.
Get snapping, and send get your entries in.
Don't forget to let us know the details of who's in the picture, and where it was taken.
Condition of entry is that images can be used for publicity purposes.
Fish & Game NZ Magazines Online
Did you miss this year's issue of Fish & Game NZ's hunting magazine? Don't worry, you can now read it all online.
If you're after more game bird hunting reading, feature articles, tips and advice, and awesome photography, we've got several back issues available on our website too.
Upland Game Hunting Opportunities
The recent run of fine and still days has prompted an increase in enquiries about upland game hunting in the Wellington Fish & Game region.
A cock pheasant about to be release into the wild (Credit: Matt Kavermann)
Quail are doing well in certain parts of the region, including in some of the riverbeds of the larger rivers where there is adequate cover and feed.
There are also good covoys building up on private land, but obviously getting access requires a bit of door knocking.
We have negotiated access to several commercial forestry blocks where there are good upland game bird numbers, and there is reasonable pheasant hunting in parts of the lower/mid Rangitikei River too.
Wellington Fish & Game Council Meeting
Got a game bird hunting issue you'd like to take up with Fish & Game? Want to see how your local Fish & Game Council is working for you?
The next meeting of the Wellington Fish & Game Council is at 3pm on Tuesday, June 6.
The meeting is to be held at Club Wairarapa, Essex Street, Masterton.
Licence holders and members of the public are welcome to attend.
Meeting minutes and agendas can be downloaded from our Council webpage.
Pitch In On Planting Day
Greater Wellington Regional Council is holding a planting day at Lake Domain - northern end of Lake Wairarapa - on June 10.
It would be great for hunters to show up and pitch in, even if it's just for half and hour or so.
Remember, it is a privilege to hunt on Wairarapa Moana, so it's important we can show we are responsible and respectful lake users.
If you are hunting nearby, please be courteous and respectful to those involved in the planting day.
Those wanting to help out should RSVP to the organisers.
Win A $500 Hunting & Fishing Voucher
Send your band details in and you'll automatically go into the draw for one of two $500 Hunting & Fishing vouchers from Simon and the team at Manawatu Hunting & Fishing.
Got a band to be registered, ring the free phone number 0800 BIRD BAND (0800-247322).
Alternatively there's a ready-made form to fill out on the Fish & Game website here (Note: prizes may vary from what is advertised on the website).
Safety First This Season
Need To Know - Transporting Firearms
A number of hunters encountered over Opening Weekend were still confused about the new requirements for storage and transportation of firearms and ammunition.
Please take a moment to read more about this on the Firearms Safety Authority's website.
Follow the steps below, and you're good to go.
- A note to hunters using the JK Donald Block in Wairarapa: Access is restricted to quads/ATVs only. The track is currently too wet for 4WDs. Please do not park on Paula Gillett's property (without her express permission) or block access ways.
- Hunters wishing to access the JK Donald block are reminded they must have an access sticker, and follow the conditions of entry. Please ask for details through the Wellington Fish & Game office.
*This report was accurate at time of writing. For your safety, please ensure you check the latest weather information before you head out hunting.