09 May 2005
One man drowned in the North Island and a young boy was shot by his
father in the South Island on Saturday during the first day of the
duck shooting season.
Kelvin John Demalmanche, 47, drowned after falling into Lake
Koitiata in the Santoft Forest, about 19km southwest of Bulls, about
8.30am on Saturday, police said.
Mr Demalmanche had been trying to retrieve a duck from the lake
when he fell from his dinghy, Constable Craig Gorringe, of Marton
police, said in a statement yesterday.
The police dive squad from Wellington retrieved his body from the
A companion of Mr Demalmanche's narrowly escaped drowning when
trying to rescue him, a spokesman for the Palmerston North-based
Square Trust Rescue Helicopter said in a statement. He was treated at
the scene by a paramedic.
Meanwhile, an 11-year-old Dunedin boy was taken to hospital after
he was shot in the face by his father while duck shooting on Saturday
at a private pond in Milton.
Police have seized all the man's firearms and his licence while the
incident is investigated.
Detective Sergeant Brett Roberts, of Dunedin police, said the boy
walked off in one direction with his mother, while the father went
It appeared the man was attempting to shoot in the air when one of
the pellets from his shotgun hit his son, who was standing about 100
metres away, near the eye.
He was taken by ambulance to Dunedin Hospital, where he was
recovering yesterday. He is expected to be discharged today.
In other news, a small number of hunters ran foul of the law during
an otherwise positive start to the southern duck shooting season, Fish
and Game Otago officer Cliff Halford said last night.
Three were caught shooting without licences in West Otago, two in
South Otago, and one in North Otago.
Some were shooting with people who had licences, Mr Halford said.
A "handful" of hunters were also caught using outlawed lead shot,
instead of the steel shot required from this season.
Among those out hunting on Saturday were three generations of the
Matheson family at their North Taieri maimai.
Murray Matheson, 36, and his sons Keith, 15, and Tim, 11, joined Mr
Matheson's father, Athol, 69, to shoot 30 ducks for the weekend.
Murray and Keith were both on crutches, Murray after a knee
reconstruction, and Keith after breaking his leg in an accident - but
they "wouldn't have missed opening day for anything".
"I've been shooting with my father since I was old enough to shoot,
and the boys have been doing it for four years," Mr Matheson, who
lives in Mosgiel, said.
The duck shooting season began at 6.30am on Saturday and runs for
between six and 12 weeks depending on the Fish and Game region.