Roar begins with warning

By Gerald Ford -
1 comment
BE SAFE: A scarred Charlie Death of Eketahuna urges farmers once again to be visible and to identify their targets.
BE SAFE: A scarred Charlie Death of Eketahuna urges farmers once again to be visible and to identify their targets.

The start of the roar (prime stag hunting season) has brought warnings from safety advocates as another hunter was fatally shot in the New Zealand bush.

Police were called at about 11.30am on Thursday after a man, 25, was shot and killed in the Ruahine Ranges - by a hunter from another group.

A dog was also injured.

The roar traditionally covers Easter weekend and lasts for one month.

Eketahuna man Charlie Death - shot in the arm and thigh in 1987 after being mistaken for a deer - has been vocal for the past two years in advocating for hunters to wear high-visibility clothing and clearly identify their targets.

Yesterday Mr Death said the news of another fatality while hunting was "very, very disappointing".

"It happens, unfortunately, every year," he said.

Meanwhile leaders from Rural Women New Zealand and the Council of Licenced Firearms Owners (COLFO) are asking hunters to take extra care and are recommending the use of a personal locator beacon.

More women are now obtaining firearms licences, according to Rural Women NZ president Wendy McGowan, with women "out there hunting and gathering as well".

"Firearms licensing nationally is on the increase and our women are a part of the reason why," she said.

Ms McGowan said now was a good time "for users to remind themselves of some of the basic safety rules".

COLFO chairman Paul Clark said the council was aware of the increase in women obtaining firearms licences. "It is well known that women generally learn handling and shooting skills quicker, and are often consistent with this," he said.

He noted that "the adrenaline rush that most males get while hunting during the roar appears to have less of an effect on most women hunters".

The leaders of both groups agree that "full freezers, healthy eating and happy households this roar is the ultimate goal".

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