FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
4th April 2005.
“The New Zealand Deerstalkers’ Association (NZDA) is both horrified and saddened to hear of the hunting fatality that occurred over the weekend and so early into what is recognised as the start of the main deer hunting season, usually known as ‘the roar’.” says Trevor Dyke, National President.
“It is timely to remind hunters that these tragedies are avoidable and should never happen,” Dyke went on to say. “In incidents such as these, the shooting of another hunter is not really an accident, as the rifle did not go off by itself. They are mistakes. Mistakes of identity, that is, failing to positively identify the target beyond all reasonable doubt.”
Dyke also acknowledged that, "Hunters must take full responsibility for their actions and realise that the outcome of their mistake is the likelihood of being charged, appearing in court and having to serve a sentence.”
Dyke further said, “Hunters should be more prudent in also helping themselves in not becoming the mistaken target by wearing the high visibility blaze coloured clothing that is now readily available. Also any hunter that is hunting with a companion and knows that his companion is out in front of him should be prepared to accept a non-participating role in the hunt until they return.”
Dyke continued by indicating, "Inexperienced hunters who wish to improve their skills and safety in the bush should consider contacting a NZDA branch and asking about the association’s HUNTS courses which place emphasis on safety and enhancing hunting skills.”
Dyke concluded by saying, “It is far better to come home without a deer or trophy, than without a mate.”