No hunting permits are being issued
To reduce the risk of people further spreading COVID-19, no hunting permits are being issued until further notice.
We have temporarily disabled the function on our website which allows hunters to apply for permits. This will be reassessed when the alert level changes.
All hunters should stay at home
The Game Animal Council, NZ Deerstalkers Association, Mountain Safety Council, Fish & Game New Zealand and DOC say hunters should not head into the hills or backcountry for hunting or fishing at this time.
Doing so will expose them and others to higher levels of risk and put pressure on the emergency services if they need to respond.
DOC huts are not available for use. They do not meet the guidance on minimum separation requirements and as it will not be possible to service huts and facilities such as toilets, hygiene will be compromised.
New Zealand Search and Rescue (NZSAR) is asking people to stick to simple outdoor exercise and avoid areas where they could get lost or require search and rescue. NZSAR want to ensure that emergency services are available to help those in the greatest need.
- Game Animal Council and NZDA media release (PDF, 100K)
- Mountain Safety Council media release:
- DOC media release
For game bird hunting and fresh water fishing information see Fish & Game New Zealand.
Deer roar and tahr rut ballots
DOC runs an annual ballot system for hunters wishing to hunt during the deer roar and tahr rut period. The ballot ensures hunters have access to an assigned hunting block.
Hunting blocks assigned to hunters as part of the 2020 deer roar ballots are cancelled until further notice.
The tahr rut begins in early May and is a popular time for hunting in the South Island. During this time tahr ballots allow a select number of hunters authorised aircraft landings in the Hooker-Landsborough and Adams Wilderness areas. The tahr rut ballots will be assessed closer to the time and will be cancelled if restrictions remain in place.