Wellington Game Bird Hunting Bulletin - 6th May 2021

Great Start to The Season! 

May 6, 2021

Despite clear skies and calm conditions in Manawatu there were plenty of ducks around to keep hunters alert over Opening Weekend (Credit: Nathan Field)

Opening Weekend went off well right across the Wellington Fish & Game region with plenty of hunters about, great duck numbers and good compliance.

Ranging teams were active throughout the lower North Island and it was great to see happy hunters, kids accompanying their parents and most groups with birds in the bag.    

The brisk southerly kept ducks moving all day in Wairarapa but elsewhere conditions were fairly settled. 

Despite the weather, hunters we encountered regularly commented on the marked increase in mallard numbers.     

This bodes very well for the rest of the season and hopefully this weekend with some rough conditions coming in on Sunday (just don't forget mother's day). 

20210501 105751Police and Wellington Fish & Game rangers checking licences on Opening Morning (Credit: Hamish Carnachan)  

Here's what the weekend has in store...  

Weather Outlook

Click here for updated weather information from MetService.

Rain radar 6May2021

A large frontal band moves across the lower North Island from the northwest on Sunday, bringing rain and strong winds into early next week.     

       

Plenty More Mallards Around      

IMG 3397

This Manawatu hunting party limited on mainly greenheads over Opening Weekend (Credit: Nathan Field). 

Just in case you missed it last week, and to whet your appetite for the season ahead, our mallard trend count flights (completed the week leading into Opening) resulted in the highest number of mallards observed in this part of New Zealand since we started our records almost 25 years ago.

As this stands, it looks likely we will be heading into the more liberal band of mallard management for next season, meaning the Wellington Fish & Game Council can look at options for giving hunters even more opportunities to target and harvest waterfowl. 

duck counts 2022

Obviously that's way out on the horizon, however, what the excellent mallard population in the lower North Island means for our hunters this season is that they can expect to see more birds around.

We'd like to hope you make the most of the excellent hunting on offer and get out as often as you can.

And with more ducks around it's an excellent season to introduce someone new to this amazing pursuit with the real possibility of giving them a taste of success.

 

What's For Tea Tonight? 

Duck recipe6May2021

Wondering what to do with all those ducks you harvested over Opening Weekend?

Check out this quick and tasty Crispy Duck Schnitzel recipe from Fish & Game's Cohen Stewart.    

If you've got a good duck recipe you'd like to share with your fellow hunters, flick it through to us.     

 

Keep Up To Date With Us On Instagram

Follow us on Instagram if you'd like to keep up to date with what we're doing and how the season is progressing. 

Check us out at: wellingtonfishgame 

Screenshot 20210423 103234 Instagram

Noticeboard

- Erindale Forest, Wairarapa, pheasant hunting:

Due to issues with the availability of cock pheasants of appropriate maturity from the breeder, we have been unable to procure enough birds to supplement the wild population for sustainable hunting and harvesting for this season. Consequently, hunting in Erindale Forest for the 2021 season has been postponed. 

The good news is we have secured a reasonable number of hen pheasants and we hope that a viable, robust population of wild birds for hunting will establish in years to come. It is our intention to secure more cock birds for release in the near future. We will keep you up to date on the opening of the hunting block for next season.

In the meantime, we’d encourage you to pursue other upland game bird hunting opportunities in the Wellington Fish & Game region and are happy to advise on where to find these. Please call us on (06)3590409 for more info. 

- Band Returns:

Harvested ducks wearing precious metal bands? Please get the info into us and play your part in the long term management of mallard population. You can keep the band, we just need some details from you. Fill in your band return info here.        

 

From the Team at Wellington Fish & Game, happy hunting and please stay safe this season.