Both Barrels July 2023 -Taranaki

  • Taranaki
  • 17/07/2023

Both Barrels July 2023 -Taranaki

Above: Ideal pheasant country.

Post duck season hunting opportunities

Although the main game bird season has come to an end, there are still plenty of hunting opportunities available from now until the season ends on Sunday 27th August.

Upland game bird hunting for pheasant and quail is the perfect excuse to stretch the legs with the dog on the weekend.

There are three forest blocks available to hunt in the Taranaki region.

Permits for hunting in Harakeke and Tauwhare forests near Whanganui are available in a weekly draw.

To participate in the draw, hunters must obtain a free permit from Taranaki F&G (either 021 270 0239 or, then prior to noon each Thursday contact Taranaki F&G to go into the draw for a permit for the weekend.

For the Nukumaru hunting area, there is no weekly draw, but hunters need a permit from Taranaki F&G and they must contact the respective grazing lessee listed on their permit prior to hunting.

A special condition for Nukumaru blocks 4 and 5 is that in accordance with conditions in the lease agreement with Whanganui District Council, permission must be granted by the leaseholder before access to those blocks is permitted.

There is also a lot of ideal Pheasant habitat outside of these permitted areas.

Pheasants have no down and dislike damp conditions.

They are found in coastal dune country, exotic forestry, lupin, broom, box-thorn, ink weed and briar patches.

The best pheasant hunting occurs on bright days.

Sunny spells have the birds moving about from daybreak to mid-morning and again from mid-afternoon to dusk.

Now is also the time to target Pukeko.

They make for exciting hunting with a dog to flush them from cover and they’re great to hunt when taking people out that are new to the sport.

Farmers also appreciate hunters taking a couple of birds that cause damage to emerging maize crops or peck holes in silage wrap and silage pit covers.

Damp or wet mornings are often the best time to hunt pukekos as they come out from cover to feed in paddocks and along stream riparian margins.

A walk-up shoot with a line of several hunters and dogs around areas of suitable habitat is often a good way to get onto some pukekos.

The bag limit for pukeko is 10 per person per day in Area C, and 5 in Areas A and B.

Paradise shelduck summer season

As a way to help farmers and landowners disperse large flocks of birds after their moult, there is a 3-weekend summer season for Paradise shelduck in Taranaki Game bird Area C only.

The upcoming summer season will run on the following dates in 2024; 24th - 25th February, 2nd – 3rd March and 9th – 11th March (Taranaki Anniversary Weekend).  

To participate in the season, hunters were required to have a 2023 game licence (unless hunting on the land they occupy), obtain a $5 permit (free for land occupiers) and fill in and return a diary.

The daily bag limit is 10 paradise shelduck per hunter per day.

Permits for the season will be available from licence agents and Fish & Game offices in early February 2024.

We also urge hunters to target Canada geese during this period, as they also congregate for moulting at the same time as paradise shelduck.

Duck Bands

Please remember to send in any details of duck bands.

This information is crucial to our research and management - so please provide as much detail as possible, including an approximate location of where you shot the bird.

This is for our records only, plus if you send the band in before the 31st of August you go in the Banding Together draw to win two boxes of Banded XD decoys.

The preferred method is to fill out an on-line form via the link: Send in your duck band details

or else contact the Taranaki Fish & Game office on 021 270 0239 or email

Once staff receive the band details we will get the information to you as quickly as possible.

The data we receive allows us to let the hunter know where the bird was banded, the sex and age of the bird when it was banded and how far it travelled from the banding site to the recovery location.

 Warm Barrels

Jacob Morison, Taranaki Fish and Game Officer

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