News from Wellington Fish and Game
Bird hunters are being given an opportunity to help farmers disperse big flocks of paradise shelduck that pose a threat to their paddocks and crops. A special two-week hunting season which started last Saturday is being held in the Wellington region, which includes the Manawatu/Wairarapa areas.
Wellington Fish & Game regional manager Phil Teal says the special season has been introduced to assist landowners who have groups of birds that are starting to feed on new grass and crops.
“By harvesting some birds outside the normal game season it creates enough of a disturbance to disperse them into smaller flocks.”
Paradise shelduck are known for moulting in groups on open water sites in January, and once the birds can fly again in February they tend to aggregate in groups.
Mr Teal says the recent dry weather could put pressure on some crop managers and this is a good way to help alleviate potential problems caused by large numbers of birds.
“Putting this special season in place demonstrates another way in which Fish & Game and hunters are working in good faith with land owners and local rural communities.”
The special hunting season is open to all 2012 licenced game bird hunters from February 9 to 24, with a five birds per day limit.