Game bird hunters reminded to ‘sort their hunting spot’

  • 1/04/2019

Game bird hunters reminded to ‘sort their hunting spot’

Game bird hunters have been reminded to stake their claim on their favourite maimai or duck shooting stand before the start of the new hunting season starting Saturday, 4 May, 2019.

Top right: Some early maimai preparation.

The process of claiming a hunting stand goes under many names depending on region – including marking up, pegging and tagging.

If a hunter wants to retain their favoured spot from last season, they must do it before 10 am Sunday, April 7.

Other hunters wanting to stake their claim over an unclaimed maimai for the first time must wait until after 10am on that date.

The rule applies to all 12 Fish & Game regions around the country.

“Tagging your favoured maimai allows you to set yourself up for the season ahead, ready to harvest birds over opening weekend – and then have first claim on that spot for the rest of the season,” says Policy and Planning Manager Robert Sowman.

Rules on who can use a hunting spot also apply once the game bird hunting season begins.

“The rules state that hunters then need to be at the maimai within one hour of the opening hour of hunting. 

“If they aren’t there within that time, the spot can be used by any other licensed hunter for the rest of the day,” Mr Sowman says.

To reclaim your spot for the upcoming season you first need to buy your 2019-20 Game Bird Licence, he says. 

When completing your licence application form, make sure you click the stand claim tag if you want one sent to you with your licence. Unless you do, you won't be sent the additional plastic tag with your plastic licence.

Hunters are advised to get their licence early to avoid the last-minute rush.

Mr Sowman says it is crucial that hunters check the regional regulations for the areas they intend to hunt it – for any changes to season lengths, bag limits and any other rules before heading out on opening weekend.

Mr Sowman says the other important news is on recent changes to the gun laws –  focused on military-style semi-automatics (MSSAs) and large capacity shotguns, the sort of firearms used in the Christchurch terrorist attack.

“It appears that the government is leaning towards allowing five-shot magazines for the type of shotguns typically used by most game bird hunters. Magazine extensions are unlikely to be allowed.

“Fish & Game will be making submissions on the matter along with other organisations and will keep hunters informed of developments.”

More official information is available here


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