The Feral Goat (Capra hircus) South Pacific Goat
Captain Cook first released goats in New Zealand in 1773 to provide food for castaways, but it has also been well documented that early whalers and sealers had done exactly the same. The Marlborough Sounds was one of the liberation areas. They adapted well to New Zealand conditions and numbers rapidly increased. As land was developed goats were brought in to combat weeds, but by the 1890′s it was recognized they were a threat to native vegetation. Since the 1930′s goat control campaigns have been in place in an effort to reduce numbers.
The New Zealand wild goats are a mixture of breeds. In the 1980′s there was a sudden move into commercial goat farming but this industry collapsed and many farmed goat breeds were allowed to escape and now come in every conceivable size, shape and color
The Challenge of the Hunt
Goat hunting can be a pleasant change to the rigors of big game deer hunting in New Zealand. Goats can live in a wide range of habitats from coastal cliffs and grasslands to mountains and forest. They can also tolerate extremes in climate from freezing to tropical. As high numbers can be found in grassland and scrubby hills, many a young hunter has been blooded on wild Goats.
Best Hunting Times
All year around
Widespread throughout New Zealand and with its multitude of colors and horn formations, the Billy Goat has great trophy appeal for many hunters of all abilities and a particular favorite with bow hunters. The goat can grown horns up to 45 inches in length, with the largest billy goats carrying a wide spread over 30 inches.
New Zealand Record
100 on the Douglas Score points system or more than 30 inches in spread
Spot and Stalk
Any caliber rifle, Bow Hunting
Pacific Goat Hunting Trips and Prices