Hunt Australia – Hunt New Zealand – Hunt New Caledonia
Newsletter March 2005

Hunt New Zealand Changes

There have been some recent developments in our New Zealand operation, not least being the retirement of long-time Hunt New Zealand manager John Berry. After fifteen years in the business John has decided it is time to hang up his boots and binoculars and relax. We all wish John and Linda the very best!

Long-time Hunt NZ head guide Chris Bilkey, assisted by his lovely and capable wife Peg, will be taking over management of all aspects of the New Zealand operation. Any former clients who have hunted with Chris will attest to his great bush skills and hunting knowledge. Peg’s forte, among her many skills, is showing the non-hunting ladies and family a great time, sight-seeing around the local townships and the spectacular South Island countryside.

Kathy Hanson cracked this magnificent fallow buck this month with a 6.5x55 Rimmed.
Most importantly we have recently opened new hunting areas, including unrestricted access to a massive game ranch of some 20,000 acres. This new hunt area has bigger red stags than our former area and a lot more of them too! We now have huge Fallow Deer, plenty of Chamois and the best Tahr hunting area in New Zealand. This Tahr hunting is a genuine wilderness area but it is accessible by 4WD tracks so we do not have to use a helicopter to hunt the Big Old Tahr that live up there. We have also found a reduction in the cost of Tahr trophy fees.

Many hunters will choose the excitement of hunting red stags in the ‘roar’ in April but there is also great hunting right through the rest of the season, from May until July, when the red stags like to rest up on sunny faces after the rut. This is also the best time to hunt Chamois and Tahr, in their full winter coat. The Chamois and Tahr rut from early May until the end of June.

Already this season (2005) we have had some outstanding success. The first hunter Bob Bulkley from Sacramento California took a monster 365 SCI Red Stag and a 13 inch Bull Tahr, on the first two days of his hunt. Hearty congratulations to Bob! Stay tuned for more updates and images of successful hunters throughout the season.

Family Hunting Program

Hunt Australia and Hunt New Zealand are family owned companies. We encourage family groups to visit the South Pacific to mix hunting and fishing adventures with a touring holiday. Young hunters especially are our future clients and we love to see them accompany their parents for the hunting experience. We plan your whole holiday through our coordinated companies, local travel agents, airlines, fishing charters, holiday destinations and our hunting camp facilities.

As an incentive to families we offer excellent price concessions to all three of our destinations – Australia, New Zealand and New Caledonia. Under our new ‘Family Hunting Program’, family members can accompany the primary hunter at the ‘non-hunter rate’ and still take any trophy animals they desire for just the listed trophy fee. For a larger family this can represent a great cost saving.

In 2001 Dr Don Wenner took one of his sons on a hunt in New Zealand with John Berry. They enjoyed the experience so much that they planned a family holiday in Australia for 2003. They toured many of our local city attractions and had great family hunts with us in our remote Arnhem Land buffalo hunting area. Don and the three sons hunted successfully and took some huge buffalo with us while Laurie and their daughter came along on the hunts as willing observers.

We asked one of our 2004 hunters Paul Dickson (Louisiana), who bought his family of six to Australia and New Caledonia to write a few notes about their experience. It seems a shame not to include all that Paul wrote as it gives an accurate, unbiased description of their hunting holiday. Many thanks to you Paul!

Paul Dickson writes
"Our boys experienced a part of the world in Gan Gan that only hunting can reveal. Both the natural and cultural richness of this place educated them in a way that cannot be equalled by any other experience. They will carry Arnhem Land with them for the rest of their lives. My wife and I thoroughly enjoyed ourselves and our sons have stories that their friends don’t believe. Hunt Australia’s camp and hunt preparation made a family trip like none other. Bob Penfold and company enjoy hosting families and made us feel welcomed in the bush in every way."
Russell Dickson had some stories to tell his schoolmates after his 2004 Arnhem Land buffalo hunt!

Hunt Australia’s operation in New Caledonia provides a rare mix of old time island charm, French country life, and unbelievable deer hunting. Hunting Rusa and Wild Turkey there can only be compared to what it must have been like to hunt Elk and Wild Turkey in the Rockies before 1800. The old inn serves outstanding French cuisine with the most personal service you could hope for. We came as clients and left as friends.

This is an ideal family hunt as the rut occurs in our summer months when the kids are out of school. While some family members are hunting the rest can explore this peaceful and un-touristed island. Its villages and markets are for the residents giving the feel that most tropical islands lost by the mid 20th century. The country towns are clean and safe. The people are warm and friendly and the weather is perfect each day.

The Rusa in rut is a magnificent hunt that should not be missed by any ardent hunter of the world’s deer. It is truly the best deer hunt in the world. I hope to return during the Spring months there to hunt Wild Turkey as it would be the best Spring Turkey hunt in the world as well."

All of the Hunt Australia and Hunt New Zealand staff enjoy entertaining these families and we hope that many more hunters bring their families to the South Pacific to experience the countries, the people and our wilderness hunting experiences that we have to offer. All of our camps and hunting areas are comfortable for ladies and families and we look forward to having these camps filled with the laughter of families into the future.

Bob Bulkey and his monster Red Stag taken with a 7mmRemMag. What a Stag. What a Hunter. What spectacular scenery!

Northern Territory Season

We will commence hunting at the Gan Gan buffalo, East Arnhem Land, on the 1st June this year and busy right through till the 10th September. ‘Last minute’ hunters be aware, we have a couple of seats on special group buffalo hunts remaining that need to be filled. Ask us for the dates.