Upland game preserves are areas of private land where captive-bred game birds (mainly pheasants, but some red-legged partridge) are released for people to hunt recreationally.
Commercial game preserves had been operating contrary to a statutory prohibition on the sale of game bird hunting rights. If nothing were to be done, commercial game preserve operators would not have been able to operate after 3 May 2019. An additional factor was that the NZ Fish and Game Council considered that commercial game preserves should cease to operate after the end of the 2021-2022 recreational game bird hunting season.
Five options were considered by this report. Option 1 was considered the best option as it was the only one that would:
- allow commercial upland game preserves to continue operating (until the end of the 2021-2022 hunting season); and
- allow commercial game preserves to charge the fees required for their businesses to be viable; and
- allow Fish and Game Councils to continue managing pheasants and red-legged partridge outside of commercial game preserve areas.
Some parts of this Regulatory Impact Statement have been withheld as they are not appropriate for release. Where this is the case, the relevant sections of the Official Information Act 1982 (OIA) that would apply have been identified. Where information has been withheld, no public interest has been identified that would outweigh the reasons for withholding it. If requested under the OIA, these sections would be reconsidered for release at that time.