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Prize Deer inadequately protected in Sth Wairarapa

Wellington Branch
New Zealand Deerstalkers' Association
Box 2148

14 September, 2006

Prize Deer inadequately protected in South Wairarapa 1080 poisoning

A large aerial 1080 Tb poisoning operation in South Wairarapa near Cape Palliser, has angered the region's deerstalkers. The area being poisoned is the 13,000 Ha Southern Haurangi block of the Aorangi Forest Park. It contains a highly valued recreational Red deer herd.

Its importance nationally has been recognised for the last 30 years by a Recreational Hunting Area (RHA) designation, one of only seven in New Zealand. This will be the first time that the deadly 1080 poison has been used in this block of the Park.

The Minister of Conservation Chris Carter has recognised RHAs as public lands where deer repellent should be used to reduce deer bykill. Though 9,000 Ha of the Southern Haurangis block is being treated with repellent, Wellington, Hutt Valley and Wairarapa deerstalkers are upset that some important hunting areas have not had repellent.

President of the Wellington Deerstalkers' Association, Joe Hubmann said " It is very disappointing that Greater Wellington Regional Council and the Animal Health Board have refused to use repellent on all of the Southern Haurangi RHA. Yet they readily use it on private land where there are private wild deer herds. We are concerned that one of the areas without repellent is the Stonewall Basin, a highly valued deer refuge" Mr Hubmann said.

"Hunters are disappointed Greater Wellington Regional Council went back on its word to do almost all the block with repellent" Joe Hubmann said. "The Council doesn't appear to recognise that deer on public recreational land are a valuable recreational and food resource".

Even when deer repellent is used there is usually a six month stand-down for hunters by the Ministry of Health, because of possible poison contamination of the food chain. Some sheep on private land in the drop zone have already died of poisoning.


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