Red Stag
About our Red Stags.

A Red Stag’s large size and huge antlers give him immense presence and, when combined with loud and aggressive rutting behaviour, make them the most sought after species for hunters visiting New Zealand.

While stags are happy to live together for most of the year this behaviour changes dramatically once March arrives and the hinds begin to cycle. Unlike other species such as Sika, Red Stags round up a harem of hinds and will defend this group while they wait for each hind to come in to season. The stag works hard to hold their females together roaring to warn other stags away and aggressively fighting any that seek to challenge him. It’s not unusual to see a cluster of satellite stags hanging around the perimeter of the hind group hoping to pick off one or two when the master stag is looking the other way. While most of the interaction is verbal or physical posturing either as closely matched stags will test themselves in battle. The clash of two huge stags is spectacular. Its hard work keeping this up and the master stags are shattered by the end of the rut. Their priority then becomes feeding up for the winter.

Despite their size, Red Stags are mobile, and will travel widely to occupy preferred feeding areas as the seasons change.

Seasonal Availability

Available to hunt from late February until early August, when they cast their antlers. Rut period starts mid-March and continues until mid-April. During this time, (what we call the roar) the Red stags are very vocal, generally very active which makes the hunting exciting.

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