Five hunters have been trespassed from the Kaweka Forest Park. This follows concerns raised by trampers, about their behavior at Te Puia Lodge in the Kaweka Forest Park over Labour weekend 2014.
Dave Carlton, Conservation Services Manager said the Department of Conservation and Police launched a joint enquiry into the group’s activity after they received several complaints from trampers. The complaints included undue noise and bad language while families and children were trying to sleep; excessive consumption of alcohol over a 12 hour period; misuse of firearms such as spot lighting and discharging a firearm late at night. “Several trampers left the hut early with their long weekend ruined” he said.
Further complaints said the group had a number of large plastic buckets and barrels for storing and concealing equipment in the forest. As part of the investigation DOC staff traveled to Te Puia Lodge and a search of the area revealed a large underground stash of equipment. This contained camping equipment, a cut down .22 rifle, a small amount of cannabis, cash and alcohol.
Dave Carlton said the group’s behavior was totally unacceptable and as a result the group had been trespassed for a period of two years. The Department and Police were considering further charges. The Department intends to increase compliance in the area with checks on hunting permits and people taking dogs into the area.
- Hunters are required to carry a valid hunting permit
- Center fire rifles only may be taken onto DOC estate.
- No shot guns or rim fire such as .22 rifles are permitted.
- Hunting is only permitted during the hours of day light.
- Trespass notices are valid for two years.
- Breach of a Trespass notice is a criminal offence under the Trespass Act 1980.
- The penalty for trespass is up to $1000.00 and/or term of imprisonment up to three months.