Many keen Kāpiti hunters will be taking to the hills soon but there is a note of caution from firearms experts.
“Hunters need to be very mindful that it is better to have no meat than no mate,” says Joe Green, Interim Chair of the Firearms Safety Council.
Stags are just starting to roar as excited hunters head into the hills at the most risky time for big game hunting.
“There are some very basic things hunters can do to minimise the risk to themselves and their mates,” Mr Green says.
Most importantly – hunters must always identify their target beyond all doubt. There is no room for error.
“If you are hunting with others and separate, cease hunting and do not start hunting again until you have re-established contact. Unload your rifle while you find your mate,” advises Mr Green.
Always ensure that your rifle is loaded only when ready to fire. Carrying a firearm loaded when it should not be is a cause of incidents.
Each year the NZ Deerstalkers Association train hundreds to hunt and use firearms safely through their iconic hunts courses. FSCANZ recommends hunters contact their local NZDA branch for more information.
“We have a good idea about what happens when one hunter shoots another,” Mr Green says. “It comes down to the basics follow the seven rules in the Arms Code.”
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