Monday, 04 March 2024 12:45

Dates confirmed for annual hunting competition

Written by  Staff Reporters
Mark Sarjeant, New Zealand Deerstalkers Association, at work. Mark Sarjeant, New Zealand Deerstalkers Association, at work.

The Department of Conservation (DOC) has announced that its annual Pureora Hunting Competition will open on 16 March.

The competition, which started in 1988, will run until a prizegiving at the DOC Pureora Field Base on 28 April.

DOC senior ranger community Ray Scrimgeour says the long-running event is popular among the central and upper and central North Island hunting communities, with a strong focus on participation and camaraderie.

“Although the weight or size of the animals is a key feature of the competition, we always like to ensure every hunter has a chance to win, so there are plenty of spot prizes, average weight divisions, and prize draw categories too,” says Scrimgeour.

Focusing on pigs and deer taken from the Pureora Forest, the competition is free to enter for any hunter with a current DOC permit to hunt in the area.

Scrimgeour says NZ Deerstalkers Association and the NZ Pig Hunting Association are crucial to the success of the event.

“They are key hunting community stakeholders and provide us with excellent advice and support, as well as carrying out the official Douglas measuring at the prizegiving,” he says.

There are four competition categories – deer, pigs, a new junior category (focusing on rats, mustelids and goat tails), and the ‘roaring’ competition.

Entries can be sighted at one of 13 recording centres throughout the competition and all entries registered at the prizegiving are eligible to win category and spot prizes.

Free kiwi aversion training for dogs will be offered at the prizegiving, and DOC is urging hunters to take up the opportunity to help protect kiwi in the wild and contribute to the preservation and protection of Pureora Forest.

Anybody interested in training should email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. to register a place. Hunters putting their dogs through kiwi aversion training can also win a family pass to the Otorohanga Kiwi House.

For more information on the Pureora Hunting Competition, including competition categories and rules, visit

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