Hunters urged not to rely on luck to keep everyone safe this Roar

Te Tari Pūreke - Roar Meda Release

25 March 2024

Hunters urged not to rely on luck to keep everyone safe this Roar

With the Easter break coinciding with the early part of the Roar hunting season, there will likely be big numbers of hunters taking to the bush this long weekend.

Recreational firearms user groups have been coordinating their messaging this year, to ensure safety remains top of mind to the thousands of hunters who might take to the hills and bush chasing roaring stags or croaking bucks this autumn.

Te Tari Pūreke – Firearms Safety Authority, which chairs the Recreational Firearms Users Group, says New Zealand hunters in general have a good culture around firearms safety, but it only takes one mistake to ruin many people’s lives and the deer Roar has a spike in these types of incidents.

“Recreational hunting is a big part of many New Zealanders lives,” says Te Tari Pureke Director of Partnerships Mike McIlraith, “We just want everyone involved to have a great time away and to head home safe at the end to their loved ones.”      

Mike McIlraith says Te Tari Pūreke will be running safety messages in mainstream media and has coordinated with key recreational firearms users groups who share the same safety goals for anyone out hunting this Roar.   

“Keeping themselves and others in their hunting area safe takes more than luck,” says Mike McIlraith.

“We’ve boiled it down to three key reminders for hunters this year – make a plan for your hunt and stick to it; always treat every firearm as loaded; and identify your target beyond all doubt.”

Mike McIlraith says hunters are lucky to be hunting in a time of high deer numbers in many places with lots of opportunities for deer. Hunters don’t need to be in a rush to shoot the first deer they see, they should take their time, and wait until they see the whole animal.


“All of this helps to keep the hunter calm and make 100 percent sure they have identified their target. If they have any doubts, then don’t shoot,” he says. “Hunters shouldn’t feel pressured to take the shot – no meat or no trophy is better than no mate!”

“We want all hunters to have a great Roar trip and come home safely.”



Other great resources can be found on:

Te Tari Pūreke has a ‘Hunter safety’ page:

The Mountain Safety Council website – Big Game hunting section:

The Game Animal Council of New Zealand ‘Hunter Safety’ page:

New Zealand Deerstalkers Association:

Fish and Game (for game bird hunting):

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