The body of a hunter shot dead yesterday in Aorangi Forest Park in Wairarapa has been recovered.

The body of the man in his late 20s was removed from difficult terrain this afternoon.

It will be taken to Palmerston North tomorrow morning where a post-mortem examination will be carried out.

Detective Senior Sergeant Sean Hansen said police would release the man's name tomorrow morning once formal identification had been carried out.


The death was reported to police shortly before 2pm yesterday by the man's hunting companion, a 59-year-old man.

Mr Hansen said a "full and thorough investigation is being carried out".

"Last night we interviewed four people from another hunting party who were in the same area as the deceased and his companion. We are now confident we understand the circumstances surrounding this man's death," Mr Hansen said.

No one has been charged over the man's death.

Police continued to appeal to other hunters who were in the area at the time to contact them.

"This man's death is a tragedy and a sad reminder to everyone to take extreme caution when out hunting, ensuring the New Zealand Mountain Safety Council's Firearms Safety Code is adhered to at all times. That includes identifying your target beyond all doubt," Mr Hansen said.

NZ Mountain Safety Council spokesman Mike Spray said he understood two hunting parties were involved in the shooting, and that made the incident unusual.

"Probably two-thirds of the incidents in the last 10 years have been with members of the same hunting party."


"This situation seems to be where one hunting party encountered another," he said.

Mr Spray said Easter weekend, which coincides with the peak of the roar, was one of the busiest times of the year for hunting.

"In the past, most of the incidents have occurred during the Easter weekend."