Introduction

Hunters can take up the chance for a short time this autumn to fly into the Tasman Wilderness Area in the heart of Kahurangi National Park to hunt.

Hunters can take up the chance for a short time this autumn to fly into the Tasman Wilderness Area in the heart of Kahurangi National Park to hunt.

Hunters can apply for hunting blocks in the wilderness area which they can access by helicopter between Saturday 26 March and 8 April and also the four days of Easter, Friday 22 April to Monday 25 April.

More information, and an online application form, will be available on the DOC website from Thursday 3 March or hunters can contact DOC’s Motueka Area Office for an information pack and application form, phone +64 3 528 1810.

DOC Motueka Area Manager Martin Rodd said helicopter access to the Tasman Wilderness Area for recreational hunting had been opened up for the first time in more than 20 years to help reduce the impacts of deer on native vegetation.

‘For hunters, it’s a great chance to get into this spectacular wilderness area by helicopter and hunt red deer, as well as chamois, goats and pigs which also are damaging to native species.’

Helicopter access for recreational hunting in the wilderness area has been opened up for this limited period with the New Zealand Conservation Authority’s approval in December of a partially-reviewed Kahurangi National Park Management Plan which now allows it. The wilderness area will be closed to commercial helicopter hunting during this time.  Helicopter access to designated wilderness areas is restricted to enable these areas to be enjoyed as remote, wild, backcountry places for recreational activities.

Background information

The Tasman Wilderness Area, encompassing 80,000 hectares, was designated in 1988. To maintain its wild, natural characteristics, there are no huts or tracks, and aircraft landings are prohibited other than for limited purposes, including pest control and search and rescue.

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