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New measures to improve hunting and conservation

24 September 2008

New measures to improve hunting and conservation

Conservation Minister Steve Chadwick today announced further steps to enhance hunting and to increase the benefits it brings to native biodiversity.

"Hunting is an important part of Kiwi culture which generations of New Zealanders have enjoyed. Today they continue to make a contribution to the management of wild animals,” Steve Chadwick said.

“A new Wild Animal Control Advisory Committee (WACAC) will focus on improving hunters’ recreational experience and their contribution to conservation by advising the Minister and Department of Conservation (DOC) on best-practice from around the country.”

A further committee will be appointed to establish a Big Game Hunting Council to represent and advocate for all hunting sector interests. “While any Council will need to be agreed to and funded by the sector, as a national body it would be well placed to advocate for hunters and to promote hunting generally.

“I would like to recognise the role of Peter Dunne in developing the package of measures announced today, in line the Labour-led government’s confidence and supply agreement with UnitedFuture,” Steve Chadwick said.

The measures form the government’s response to the Ministerial panel, tasked with investigating options for the management of deer, chamois, tahr and wild pigs. The measures announced today broadly reflect the Panel’s agreed recommendations.

"The submitters agreed that the conservation of native biodiversity should be the primary concern. The Panel agreed that changes to legislation are not required, however, there was a need for culture change among hunters and within DOC. The new measures give the best opportunity to improve the relationship between DOC and hunters, and preserve our unique national heritage.

“The WACAC will have experts with a proven track record in working with communities, who will analyse current practices and identify successful ones so they can be applied throughout the country.

“The Panel also identified a need to improve coordination within the sector to improve cooperation between groups, and increase connections with landowners and biosecurity agencies. The Establishment Committee will help the sector develop a Big Game Hunting Council to achieve this.”

Additional measures being investigated by DOC include simplifying hunting permits, increasing access of hunters to trophy tahr, informing hunters about participating in decision making, and reviewing Recreational Hunting Areas.


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