See the Sika Foundation’s latest Newsletter (June 2018)

For articles and other media, click here… 

For updates about upcoming possum control operations and our policy on 1080, click here… 

For more information about the organised hunts, click here…  

Whio Recovery Trapping Project info & updates can be found here… 

Hut and Track maintenance

Taupo, 20 October, 2018 – The Kaimanawa Hunter Liaison Group, made up of members from the Central North Island Sika Foundation, NZDA Taupo and Hunters & Habitats supply volunteers to help out DOC with hut and track maintenance. DOC supply all of the materials and fly the teams in, they can stay for an extra day or two and have a hunt when the work is done.

Mike Main & Josh van der Valk went into the Cascade hut on Thursday 18 October and came out on Saturday 20 October and carried out the following work. Removed the fireplace as it was very badly cracked. It had a 20mm crack in the bottom plate which would let hot ash and embers fall out. The top plate also has a crack in it which lets smoke fill the hut. They also moss killed the hut and long drop, removed the water tank and scrubbed it out and put a large stainless-steel tap in the bottom to drain silt etc out when needed, cleaned guttering, stapled chicken mesh to the deck and steps, removed some small trees and scrub around hut to let more light in and replaced mesh in the meat safe.

A return trip will be necessary to install a new fire, replace a broken hinge on the meat safe, replace clear light on the roof and maybe stain the hut just to freshen it up and protect the cladding.

Thanks guys, the users of the Cascade hut will appreciate your hard work!


Hunting Under Attack

Taupo, September, 2018

It’s time to Band Together!

Hunters are under political attack. The current Conservation Minister, Eugenie Sage, has rejected any Sika HOSI progress on her watch, despite the Sika Foundation’s proposal, in our view, offering far better outcomes than the status quo under DOC’s current management.

At a national level too, she has:

1. Threatened to review the Game Animal Council
2. Undertaken a national WARO Concession review with no consideration of recreational hunting
3. Is now proposing a major Tahr cull, without any consultation.

What’s next?

She seems to see hunters as part of a significant conservation problem, rather than a huge source of knowledge, skill and energy towards innovative conservation solutions.

Her disconnected Wellington ideology is ignorant and often offensive to those of us who care deeply about our forests and wilderness.

It is time for hunters to move away from being simply end-use consumers of our game animal resources – concerned only about what we will hunt next Saturday – to responsible resource management participants, with a longer term view.

Game animals do have an ecological consequence, but healthy game animals in healthy habitat are a hugely valuable natural resource.

Hunting is conservation and hunters are conservationists. We must promote this message effectively, as a collective.

If you care about the future of hunting and want to get involved in being part of longer term conservation solutions, swing by the Sika Foundation, Hunters & Habitats and/or NZDA booths at the Sika Show next weekend, join up, and have a chat about what we are doing together.

Together, we are stronger. Follow us on Facebook. 

Keep yourself safe in an emergency when hunting beacon

If you regularly head into the backcountry, a personal locator beacon (PLB) is essential. The Sika Foundation can provide you with a KTI personal locater beacon at just $314.00 (plus postage $5.) Please note: We are not making a profit on these. We just want hunters using them as a safety device.

The details are:

New Zealand Coded KTI Safety Alert Personal Locator Beacons SA2G-NZ 406MHz PLB provide six independent means of rescue and come with a ten-year warranty and battery life guarantee. Supplied with a carry bag, lanyard, whistle and mirror.

More about Personal Locator Beacons here…

** The unit is coded for registration in New Zealand with RCCNZ beacon registration.

If you would like to purchase one, email or call John Cook on 027 224 60 56

December 17, 2017 

Our latest newsletter is now online. You’ll find it here…

November 29, 2017 

Southern Kaimanawa Deer Survey Project – First Random Draw Winner For A Free Helicopter Flight.

OSPRI have contracted Landcare Research to carry out a survey project in the southern Kaimanawas to determine if TB is present in the wild deer herd in this area.  The survey involves helicopter shooting of deer in the Remote Experience Zone (REZ) as this area doesn’t receive high hunting pressure because of the access and hunters are encouraged to supply samples outside the REZ.

In the area surrounding the REZ Landcare Research are encouraging hunters to supply samples of the deer we shoot in the area and to help cover the cost of your hunt they will pay you $150 per sample supplied and will do a draw for a free helicopter flight back into the area every time they reach a total of 10 deer shot by recreational hunters.

Landcare Research has donated the first free helicopter flight with Helisika to Jonathan Murrow who won the first random draw after a total of 10 deer heads were received from recreational hunters. He was with a party of 3 who handed in 4 heads from the Thunderbolt tops during a Sika Foundation organised hunt in late October, the party have decided to all return together on the free flight.

By collecting the four samples the party received $600 which nearly covered the cost of their fly in hunt, plus they won a free flight back into the area.

Landcare Research are starting again and after the next lot of 10 heads handed in there will be another random draw.

For information on how to take part in this survey project and receive $150 for each sample and go into the draw for the next free helicopter flight contact either Aran Proud Landcare Research on  027 300 6309, or Ivor Yockney Landcare Research on 027 201 5279.

October 27, 2017 

The Sika Foundation is very disappointed that someone has taken it upon themselves to undertake a selfish, illegal action that undermines all legitimate Sika hunters, and our genuine, lawful aspirations for a Sika HOSI.  The Foundation is working cooperatively with the GAC and DOC over the illegal release of sika in Taranaki, to demonstrate it is a responsible organisation committed to the sound management of sika, within the existing legal framework.  We condemn the illegal release of Sika outside their recognised Central North Island range.

Please read our joint press release (as sent to the media today by the Game Animal Council and Central North Island Sika Foundation) here…

October 12, 2017 

The Umukarikari aerial pest control operation is planned for spring 2017, weather dependant. Download the Fact Sheet here.

March 28, 2017

The next fly in date for our organised hunts is: 7-10 April, for which the following blocks are available:

  • Waimarino
  • Kopuawhio
  • Kaipo
  • Ruatahuna tops
  • Thunderbolt tops
  • Jap Creek
  • Paimahi Plateau
  • Waiotaka
  • Whitikau
  • Pox Clearing

For more information and to download the Summary of Kaimanawa Forest Park Organised Hunts click here…

March 15, 2017

Our March Newsletter for CNISF Members is out. Have a read…

November 28, 2016 

Some interesting statistics from DOC’s online hunting permit system below, which shows just how significant Kamanawa/Kaweka (Sika) are in terms of total public land hunting use. It came as a result of questions asked at our recent Kaimanawa Hunter Liaison Group meeting with DOC. Hunters can tick a wide range of hunting destinations on a single permit, but it does show Kaimanawa & Kaweka are consistently up there in the Central North Island.

Stats from DOC’s online hunting permit system

2011 - NZ total
2012 - NZ totalTongariroKaimanawaKawekaPureora
2013 - NZ totalTongariroKaimanawaKawekaPureora
2014 - NZ totalTongariroKaimanawaKawekaPureora
2015 - NZ totalTongariroKaimanawaKawekaPureora
2016 (as of August) - NZ totalTongariroKaimanawaKawekaPureora

September 08, 2016 

Find the latest Hunting Central North Island Newsletter from DOC here.

August 30, 2016 

A win for the Sika Foundation, as OSPRI postpones the planned Kaweka East TB operation to enable further undertaking of the hunting season for recreational users of the region. Click on the following links their Letter to the Sika Foundation and the updated Aerial Map.

June 8, 2016

We are now an incorporated society.

Interim President is John Cook
Interim Secretary is Cam Speedy
Interim Treasurer is Mark Bridgman

Inaugural AGM date: August 13, 2016 at 11.00am at the Great Lake Centre, Taupo

May 30, 2016

Along with the meeting planned for tomorrow, Tuesday – June 31 at the Puketitiri Golf Club from 4pm, two more dates for OSPRI information meetings have been confirmed. These will run along the same lines as Puketitiri information meeting. Drop in anytime between 4:00pm and 7:00pm and talk to OSPRI and discuss all three of their proposals for 1080 operations in Sika country: Kaweka East, Kaipo Ahimanawa/Takahaipo. This is your chance to have a say directly.

Turangi, 8th June,
When : 4:00pm to 7:00pm
Where: Senior Citizens hall, McLaren Park, Ohuanga Road, Turangi.

Taupo, 9th June
When: 4:00pm to 7:00pm
Where: Taupo Bowling Club, 4 Ferry Rd, Taupo

May 27, 2016

OSPRI have agreed to have information evenings the 1080 drops scheduled in the Kaweka East sika areas. This is your chance to have a say directly with OSPRI. This is in response to the great work all of you have done by emailing the ministers. Without your support, the voice of all us sika hunters would not be as strong.

It would be great if as many people as possible could make it to the meetings with their question’s for OSPRI to answer.
We have listed some key points below if you wish to take them along. We as sika hunters need everyone to be on the same page with these messages/questions:

1.) OSPRI’s activities impact Sika, Sika hunters, businesses and landowners. They need to acknowledge that;

2.) There is no TB in many of the areas proposed for treatment this winter – why spend taxpayers money chasing ghosts?

3.)Why can’t OSPRI reduce the treatment area to just known areas of infection?

4.) Sika are vulnerable to 1080 baits because they are small and forage on anything;

5.) Many Sika Hunters use well trained while hunting, extremely valuable dogs – OSPRI are putting those valuable dogs at risk for many months.

6.) Why can’t OSPRI use deer & dog friendly ground based methods over more of their treatment areas?

7.) July/Aug is the lowest hunting use time – why can’t OSPRI target this time period?;

8.) We hunt in areas close to the 1080 drop boundary, what is a safe distance for meat recovery to feed our family’s.



OSPRI is hosting a public information evening on Tuesday 31 May to provide a further opportunity for discussion about TBfree Central North Island pest control operations.

OSPRI manages the TBfree programme and conducts aerial and ground-based possum control operations in the Central North Island high country towards its goal of eradicating bovine tuberculosis TB from wildlife and farmed cattle and deer. Possums are the main spreader of TB between animals, and the control of their populations is fundamental to eradicating TB.

Wide consultation with community agencies preceded the consent procedure and planning for aerial 1080 possum control operations in the Eastern Kaweka Range and other high country areas this winter. OSPRI has listened to recent community concerns, extended the consultation period and postponed the start of any operations while concerns are considered.

The meeting on TUESDAY welcomes input from any community affected by control activities, and any groups that use the land for recreational hunting. TWO MORE INFORMATION EVENTS in early June, in Turangi and Taupo, will preview other planned operations in the Central North Island high country.

The drop-in events are opportunities for communities to discuss any effects of the pest control operations. Interested citizens are invited to speak with OSPRI staff about:

• TB management in the area
• Aerial possum control operations
• Ground control operations
• TB testing of livestock

Tuesday’s event will be held at the Puketitiri Golf Club from 4pm. There will be discussions on how the programme might affect your community, and an explanation of the benefits that TB control brings while protecting and enhancing the region’s agricultural businesses.

A factsheet on the Kaweka East operation is available online at
Please contact the OSPRI Hamilton office on 07 849 8915
OSPRI New Zealand Limited
Level 9, 15 Willeston Street, PO Box 3412, Wellington 6140
P 04 474 7100 |