Permits and licences are needed to hunt New Zealand game birds.

Paradise shelduck/putakitaki. Photo copyright Andrew Walmsley. DOC use only.
Paradise shelduck/putakitaki

Waterfowl, including paradise shelduck, mallard, grey and shoveler duck and black swan can be hunted in DOC managed areas.

Upland game such as pheasant and quail can also be hunted.

Licence and permit

To hunt game birds you'll need both:

  • A licence from Fish & Game NZ.
  • A DOC game bird hunting permit. These permits are for specific areas and periods and are issued through the DOC office closest to the hunting area.
  • For game bird hunting in the Waikato and Hauraki regions, you can collect your permit directly at certain outlets when you purchase your Fish & Game licence.

Find out more about game bird licences and permits

Canada goose

A small game hunting permit is required from DOC to hunt Canada goose or feral goose.

Hunting seasons

Most game bird seasons start in May, although season dates vary depending on the species of bird, and the Fish & Game region you are hunting in.

Fish & Game’s Game Bird Hunting Guide is provided free with every game bird hunting licence.

More information

The Fish & Game website has detailed information about game bird hunting in New Zealand.

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