Students from St Bede’s College, Christchurch, this month took part in the inaugural Derek Lovell Young Hunters’ Trust event at Rata Peaks Station.
Firefighter Derek Lovell, who died as a result of the explosion at Icepak Coolstores, Tamahere, on April 5, 2008, was a passionate hunter who had started to mentor youth about the outdoors and hunting. His widow Milli, friends and colleagues have formed the the trust to continue Derek’s youth mentoring.
Read more on the trust, its aims and how to support it here.
Over the weekend of February 13 & 14 the first four students to undertake the programme, Mathew Coakley, Joseph Shaw, Jack McIntyre and George Clark were given a snapshot of what is involved in hunting, including getting training in hunting ethics/rationale, weapons safety/use, stalking/recovery and butchery.
Each arrived home safely (with all 10 fingers) and a bag of Tahr meat (back-steaks and a roast), reported their school, St Bede’s College.
During the course of the hunt each boy managed to stalk into position for a shot at a juvenile Tahr, making a clean kill. The shots were all between 3-400m and all animals were recovered. The boys even got to experience the joys of carrying the animals out in fading light. All the animals were free ranging and in habitat typical of where they can be hunted by anyone with the drive to do so.
The weekend was a success and it is hoped to run the events on a regular basis in future.