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End of duck hunting season in Eastern region

End of duck hunting season in Eastern region

Game bird hunters in the Eastern Fish & Game Region are being urged to make the most of Queen’s Birthday Weekend, with the season for mallard and grey duck ending on the Monday of the holiday weekend (June 2, 2014).

The Eastern Region set a one month season which began on May 3, with a bag limit of six birds a day.
Senior Fish & Game officer Matthew McDougall says the seasons set by the Eastern Council for the different species are the result of some careful analysis – they’re based on ongoing monitoring including hunter surveys, banding and trend counts conducted throughout the region.

He says the mallard season has proved to be hard, just as predicted, but those who’ve put in the time, “are getting birds for the table. The hens that have survived, at least in part thanks to the short season, will go on to breed next year.”

Mr Mc Dougall says hunters are urged to make the most of this final opportunity over the three days.“Take your dog and gun and get out and enjoy the fresh air.”

He says that “jumping ponds and some of the maize paddock hunting” seems to have been more productive in this settled weather, and the last weekend of the waterfowl season should be a good time for one last walk around some of these spots.

And after this weekend, it’s time to swap the gumboots for some walking boots and target some different species.
Paradise shelduck can be hunted until June 29, and quail, cock pheasant and pukeko until the end of August. “Don’t pack up early for winter, turn your attention to some of these birds that make for exciting hunting, especially with a dog to flush the birds.”

But do check your regulation booklet, or the Fish & Game website www.fishandgame.org.nz Mr McDougall advises. The regulations provide for fines up to $5000 for shooting a game bird out of season, so it’s well worth taking some care to identify your target, he adds.

Fish & Game still wants to hear from hunters who harvest any birds with bands – by writing, phoning or emailing with details of the bird and its band number. Those who get their details in by the end of August go into a draw to win one of five hunting jackets provided by Hunting and Fishing New Zealand (details on the Fish & Game website).


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