From the middle of March the Red Stags start getting active from lying in muddy wallows to rubbing their antlers on the native plants, a change in cooler weather brings on the Stags to Start ‘Roaring’ (the rut).
Given the name. a stag call is similar to that of a lions call – a deep gutteral sound that echoes down the valleys from up high in the cool morning and evening air.
An exciting time for all as our first hunters experienced…
July marks the end of the rut for bull tahr as they slowly move back to their bachelor groups.
Our New Zealand Safaris continue as sambar and rusa deer begin their rut through to August. Red stag hunting continues on till September.
During these winter months, rifle and bow hunting red stags, bull tahr or fallow bucks will take you to North facing slopes where big game trophies will maximise the sun.
As hunting guides in New Zealand, some will now start there season in Canada and Alaska. Our safaris now take us to Australia also, guiding on big game free range water buffalo in the remote Arnhem land, Northern Territories. This is still one of the last true wild places left to hunt dangerous game on untouched land, with high numbers of buffalo and wild boar it is a true trophy hunting adventure in the tropics.
As the temperatures start to cool down in the South Island, our mountains are now capped in snow that will last through until October.
With this, comes the start of the rut for our mountain animals.
May is the start of the chamois rut, a small mountain antelope that weighs around 90 pounds. Fast, agile and alert, this beautiful animal lives in small family groups, with the lone Bucks now moving to find their nannies to start a new cycle of life.
The Himalayan bull tahr are also on the move, the rut is still a few weeks away but already we are seeing the bulls coming down and going through the nannies, before heading back up to rest in the rocks high above waiting impatiently.
There’s is no better time than being able to sit and glass these magnificent animals surrounded by some of the worlds most spectacular scenery right here in our South Island mountains.
As we move into fall, last night’s southerly has left behind a beautiful clear day today with a couple of inches of snow on our higher Canterbury mountains including the Southern Alps.
When this occurs it causes a stirring amongst the red stags, as they now move down into the lower country searching for the female ‘hinds’. The rut for for red deer is known as ‘the roar’ after the guttural bellow that the males make which reassembles that of a lion’s roar.
The rut will go through till the end of April with a short secondary ‘roar’ in early May.
The Fallow Bucks are also Starting to move into Bachelor groups and you can now find lone bucks on the edge of the does. This marks the Start of the much anticipated hunting season in New Zealand as the weather cools, thoughts about the exciting hunts that lay ahead, and the snow capped South Island mountains that our animal grace.
We feel blessed to call this hunters’ paradise home and to be able to share with our clients the experience of our ‘New Zealand Safaris’.
New Zealand Safaris Supply: Cooking and eating gear, food, tents, sleeping bags and mats if required.
General: New Zealand is a small country surrounded by ocean. The weather is extremely changeable and can vary from hot/dry/sunshine to blizzard conditions with little warning. (There is no land between NZ and the Antarctic.) Hence light jackets and over-trousers that can be carried are valuable, clothes that you would expect to require on a late Fall hunt in Alaska are suitable.
Outer garments, hats, etc should be of subdued colours or green/brown camouflage
Your rifle should be sighted in for 200 metres, with good quality projectiles of suitable weight. (130 or 150 grain for the 270W, 150 for the 7mm, and 180 for the 300 seem about right). A good quality scope is ESSENTIAL, either 4X or vari-power.
Ensure that you have sufficient warm clothing, the above list is the MINIMUM. If you do have too much the excess can be safely stored while you are hunting. Also bring casual clothes for before and after the hunt.
- Boots: Suitable for mountain hiking (waterproof, heavy sole). Additional light boots/road shoes for camp use are also useful.
- Socks: Warm socks for hiking in cold conditions – minimum of 4 pairs, wool are best, as they will get wet.
- Trousers: 1 pair of WARM hunting pants, 1 pair of light hunting pants and/or tracksuit bottoms.
- Shirts: 2 heavy weight warm (wool preferred) shirts and 1 light shirt.
- Jersey: 1 wool jersey, I track suit top
- Hat: 1 wool or insulated cold weather hat, 1 sun hat (peak cap or brimmed hat).
- Gloves: 1 pair of gloves suitable for cold weather hunting.
- Underclothes: Minimum 2 heavy weight “T” shirts for cold conditions and 1 lightweight “T” shirt. 4 pairs of under pants and 1 pair of long john’s. (Polypropylene mountain gear recommended.)
- Jacket: Wind/rainproof jacket – essential (insulated layer optional but useful especially in May thru September).
- Over-Trousers: Wind/rainproof lightweight over-trousers are recommended
- Insulated Vest: recommended optional extra especially May – September
- Also Recommended: Sun glasses (snow glare), small day backpack for lunches, binoculars, etc
- Optional Equipment: Sleeping bag (cold weather down or similar) and mountain pack for personal gear – only required on Wilderness Experience hunts.
- Personal Hunting Equipment: Rifle – suitable calibres for NZ are 270W, 30-06, 7mm Rem Mag, 300 Mag or similar, ammunition – 40 rounds, knife, binoculars, cameras, video camera. Personal, Toilet, Medical gear etc…