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What are the rules for bowhunting on DOC Land?

Hunting with Bow and Arrow on DOC Land

Once you’re confident and happy enough with your archery skills you may consider bowhunting. Pretty much all game animals in New Zealand are introduced species, so you’re doing two good deeds at once: You remove unwanted pest that destroys the native forest and you bring kai to the table! What could be better?

DOC has some basic rules around bowhunting and the best thing is that the permit is free.

1. You need a Hunting Permit

You do need a hunting permit. The rules vary slightly based on the area you want to visit and the game you’re going for. But usually the permit is free and can be obtained on short notice either online or by visiting a DOC office.

The type of hunting permit you need and how to get it, is explained on DOCs hunting blocks’ webpage: Search for a hunting block.

2. Your equipment needs to meet minimum criteria

Recently the minimum criteria for hunting with bow and arrow has changed and opened it up to more people, which was great news. When you hunt on DOC land you need to comply with the following:

  • Minimum drawing weight factor 15 kg (35 lb).
  • Minimum diameter of two opposing blades is 22 mm (7/8 in). – All broadheads we sell will meet this criteria.
  • Only non-barbed hunting arrows are permissible. – All broadheads we sell will meet this criteria.
  • Arrows with any poison, explosive or other chemical substance on or in the head or shaft are not permitted.

Please confirm by visiting this link that our information is up to date. It rarely changes but we want to make sure that you’re compliant. Just click here to see the latest on the DOC website: DOC – Bow and Crossbow Hunting Information


You may also connect with the New Zealand Bowhunter Society: