Find the information you need to stay safe while hunting.

The code and the rules

If you’re going hunting with a firearm, you must know and follow: 

Be prepared

Remember to look after the safety of yourself, your mates and other outdoor users, and always be well prepared for each hunt – especially during Roar season.

Before you go: 

  • check the weather forecast before you make your plans. Be aware of any rain and snow that could lead to a rise in river levels, and plan accordingly
  • make sure everyone has the right clothing, food and equipment for all possible condition
  • consider the experience and fitness of everyone in your group when planning your trip
  • know where you are going. Make sure you carry a map and know how to read it
  • carry an emergency communication device such as a distress beacon or satellite phone.

Let your friends and whānau know where you are going and the details of your trip before you leave. You can use PlanMyWalk.NZ to build a trip plan and share it with others. 

Find out how to get and register a beacon at

While you’re hunting

You need to: 

  • involve your whole group in the decision-making and make sure everyone is comfortable with the plans being made
  • take firearm safety seriously. Even if you are hunting alone, it is highly likely that other hunters will be around
  • iIdentify your target beyond all doubt
  • treat every firearm as loaded. If you are sharing a firearm, make sure the person carrying the firearm maintains responsibility for checking it is in the appropriate state of load
  • wear blaze if bush hunting
  • always follow the 7 safety rules.

Free eLearning - Better Hunting

The Game Animal Council offer a free 'Hunting Essentials' eLearning course to broaden your hunting skill set.

To find out more, visit:

Better Hunting Aotearoa

Safety advice for common kinds of hunting

Essential resources for hunters

Check out the videos and resources below from the Mountain Safety Council (MSC) to help you and your mates stay safe while hunting.


Plan for a safe hunt

Watch on YouTube: Same hunt, different story - YouTube

I survived: a hunter's story


Look after your mates this roar

Watch on YouTube: Look after your mates this roar - YouTube

Duck season safety


Need help?
phone Phone 0800 844 431 (04 499 2870)
8.30am to 5pm, Monday to Friday