We Don’t Want Any Hunting Deaths This Roar
New Zealand Deerstalkers’ Association Incorporated
March 20 2013
‘We Don’t Want Any Hunting Deaths This Roar’.
This is the sincerest hope of Bill O’Leary, Vice President of New Zealand Deerstalkers’ Association (NZDA) and national coordinator of the association’s hunter training scheme HUNTS.
The recent release of the coroner’s report on the accidental shooting of a Rotorua hunter last year is an unwelcome but timely reminder to hunters that a wrong decision can have deadly consequences. The extensive media coverage of the report has given cause to deerstalkers to take care especially over the next month as the roar takes a large part of the country’s hunters into the bush in pursuit of stags.
Deerstalkers feel gutted when ever there is a fatality according to O’Leary and his organisation urges hunters to be pro active in taking steps to make this roar fatality free.
Read and understand the seven basic rules of firearm safety and commit to observing them faithfully. They are simple but comprehensive and have stood the test of time.
Follow the NZDA hunting guideline to wear clothing that contrasts with the environment and the animals. If you don’t want to wear hunter orange (hi viz) then try the alternative blaze blue that has recently become available.
“If you hunt with a mate and loose sight of each other please, please, please stop hunting until sight contact is reestablished.” Bill O’Leary emphasises that continuing to hunt without sight of one’s mate is like playing Russian Roulette.
Positively identify the target by seeing the head, neck and shoulder of the deer clearly and use both eyes to do this. O’Leary is uncompromising, “Don’t use the telescopic sight; this narrows the field of view to a restricted tunnel and psychologically once the rifle is at the shoulder you are semi committed to pull the trigger.”
And consider the firing zone. A bullet goes a long way and in the bush can go well beyond one’s field of view. Know your hunting territory and know the direction of tracks and camping sites huts and houses.
Deerstalkers should have two mantras says O’Leary, The seven basic rules and the old forestry safety message ‘No meat is better than no mate’.