Teen shot by hunting mate on Southland farm

A 17-year-old has undergone surgery and is recovering after being shot while hunting on a Southland farm in the early hours of yesterday morning.

Detective Dougall Henderson, of the Invercargill CIB, said the youth had been shot and injured by a hunting companion. The victim and associates were spotlighting for deer using a vehicle on a farm near Orepuki, in Western Southland.

He was taken to Southland Hospital, where he underwent surgery, and was said to be recovering and in a stable condition, Henderson said.

Investigators from Invercargill's criminal investigation unit carried out a scene examination at the site of the shooting yesterday, and the members of the hunting group were assisting police with their inquiries, Henderson said.

The shooting comes after two fatal hunting incidents in the south this year.

In March, a man died after being shot in the back of the head while out hunting with two friends in the Maungawera Valley, near Wanaka.

The following month, a 26-year-old man was killed after being shot by an associate while on a hunting trip near Cattle Flat.

Monday's incident was a timely reminder for hunters to ensure they followed the seven basic rules of firearms safety, Henderson said.

Those going hunting needed to treat every firearm as loaded, always point firearms in a safe direction, load a firearm only when ready to fire, identify your target beyond all doubt, check your firing zone, store firearms and ammunition safely, and avoid alcohol or drugs when handling firearms, he said.

The Southland Times