Killing of Kereru by Norwegian Tourists intensifies

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Anger continues to grow over a YouTube video of five Norwegian men shooting endangered Kereru with the controversy intensifying as the men have attempted to remove the offending video. Other copies of the slaughter however continue to circulate.

The NZPA has reported that authorities in Norway are now considering prosecuting the men even though the crime took place overseas.

KillingKereruFFive Norwegian men who shot New Zealand wildlife are ducking for cover as a row continues over their YouTube video of protected kereru being slaughtered.

According to reports the Norwegians spent the New Zealand summer travelling round trout streams and hunting, then returned home to post a video compilation of their trip’s highlights, apparently with hopes to return and make a longer video on fly fishing in the South Island. But after three days their clip of a rifleman shooting at a kereru, the bird falling from a tree, and film of one of the tourists holding two dead, bloody birds had attracted over 400 scathing comments, with significant criticism from other Norwegians shamed by their behaviour.

Department of Conservation spokesman Reuben Williams said the kereru was an absolutely protected species under the Wildlife Act.

The maximum penalty for killing such protected wildlife is a $100,000 fine and up to a year in jail.

Conservation Minister Kate Wilkinson said she was “absolutely outraged” by the clip, which also showed the tourists shooting a paradise shelduck. Paradise ducks can only legally be hunted with licence and a shotgun during the shooting season starting in May. Illegal hunting can bring a fine of up to $5000.

The YouTube video also had footage of a Fox Glacier helicopter pilot carrying the men on a West Coast hunting trip, where they shot tahr. Wildlife enforcement officials are understood to have sought from the helicopter company and the pilot information to identify the men. On the east coast of the South Island they shot wallabies and a hare.

Hans Tore Hoviskeland, a senior public prosecutor at the Norwegian National Authority for Investigation and Prosecution of Economic and Environmental Crime (Okokrim) told the nation’s biggest newspaper, Aftenposten, that if the men had shot protected animals in New Zealand, “it is very regrettable”.

The way I see it, they can also be prosecuted in criminal proceedings in Norway,” he said. “We will do further research to see what has happened in the case”.

Mr Hoviskeland said Norwegians convicted of hunting protected endangered wildlife may be liable under the Norwegian penal code to up to six years in jail.

You can express your concern to the Norwegian Office of the Prime Minister by clicking here.

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15 COMMENTS

  1. Kia ora koutou, I agree with Marewa… visitors to New Zealand receive mixed messages about New Zealand's outdoor culture and environmental values…. DoC and Tourism New Zealand need to provide more specific information about hunting and fishing regulations for visitors prior to arrival and upon being issued permits. Seeking specific informaiton is difficult. My impressions are that these young men acted unintentionally. Norway has a culture of 'friluftsliv' which encourages respect for nature and living with nature on nature's terms … including seeking sustenance from nature (as do many NZ hunters and fisherpeople).This cultural background combined with their experiences in New Zealand trying to live in the outdoors has resulted in tragic circumstances. Undoubtedly they regret their actions …looking to the future more information on regulations and compliance for NZ recreationists, and especially international visitors, is needed from DoC and those in the tourism sector that assist access to hunting areas (ie charter flight operators)! Perhaps their story can be used positively…for informing future visitors …

  2. Love our Government and DOC indignation yet they kill thousands of protected species each year with aerial 1080. 30% of tomtits are killed. Who knows what the remaining 70% are like after a serious dose of reproductive cancer inducing 1080.

  3. Kia ora, I agree with Mawera on many things here. 1080 drops devastate more than we know or hear about and it is a painful death. Ban 1080 Aotearoa!!!! However, I believe if you go into a country with the purpose of hunting as part of your sport/recreation you should KNOW what you can and cant hunt. Immigration need to consider that or at least at customs when they ask for the purpose of the visit. Kereru mate for life so there is a lost bird out there somewhere and who knows how many werent on video. I dont know what the law is regarding hunting in Aotearoa, maybe we can write a submission to request all hunters are aware of our native species at customs. Any idea how we may start that happening? Korero mai koutou

  4. AE ignorance is no excuse. I tautoko Mawera, Norwegians have behaved with ignorance (and arrogance), but so do we with regard to DOC, 1080 and the effect on nga pepe of Tane Mahuta

  5. Looks like those Norwegians have taken the TAPU of their actions back to Norway – Good Job!

    He mate M?ori nga r?waho tangata ma, he makutu to ratou ora bleh!

  6. I wonder why there is not the same cry of anger when DOC do a 1080 drop in the bush and kill kereru and other native species. We all react with anger at a couple of tourists making a mistake but we knowingly allow DOC, a Government Department, to indiscriminately kill what ever they like with 1080 and that is just collateral damage…

  7. The Kereru is such a beautiful manu with very few left, who do they think they are come here an do that,coz they were hunters they are giving cards on which species is endangered.my thought is UTU on their ass an then put it on youtube.

  8. make examples of them,give the max penalty of fines and jail terms and that will send a very clear message to all, who are thinking of been disrepectful to our wildlife….anything less and new zealand will be a laughing stock to rest of the world.the ppl who supplied the firearms have something to anwser too as well.

  9. It doesn't matter what country they are in including their own, you JUST DON'T SHOOT PROTECTED ENDANGERED SPECIES! or NATIVE SPECIES to a country. Most people with a brain would source that information especially if they were VISITING a foreign country!! Further investigations need to be made and people to be dealt with accordingly!

  10. @ Mawera Karetai, "… The important question is, did they shoot them knowing they are on the list of birds not to shoot?"
    Not the question at all! They were predators.
    Predators usually have 2 MAJOR COMMONALITIES:
    – Their BIG FAT EGO (thats why they put it on YouTube)
    – INHERENT DESIRE TO CONTROL / HAVE POWER OVER THE HELPLESS

  11. The important question is, did they shoot them knowing they are on the list of birds not to shoot? If they did so unknowingly then that shows we need to so a better job of educating tourists who come here to hunt. It seems to me that if you shoot a species which you know is protected, you don;t post it on YouTube…

    • We can not be expected to hold everyones hand when they come to our country. I have travelled, and every country I have visited I have made an effort to understand the laws. I strongly believe it is up to the individual to educate themselves on our culture. We cannot accept the old fallback position 'I didn't know?"

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