Going out for a coffee in the morning is a part of my daily routine.
Recently I met a couple who are from New Zealand at my favorite cafe. They also come to this cafe every morning and we enjoy chatting when we meet.
I saw them this morning at the cafe and listened to the story of deer in New Zealand. Actually I have heard this story from other kiwi men before, it seems to be an important history for them.
The lands of New Zealand were isolated from a continent from the earliest times and they had a characteristic ecosystem. There were almost no mammals in the land, because of this the ecosystem of earthbound birds grew.
About 150 years ago, the colonists brought and released deer to the lands of New Zealand. Deer increased soon, they destroyed the forest, and it badly affected the original ecosystem.
Finally the government decided to get rid of deer and many hunters were employed for this mission. When they went for hunting, they stayed in the forest almost for a month and continued hunting deer.
As helicopters became widespread in New Zealand, they began to use them for hunting and shooting deer from the sky. But they couldn’t root out all deer, so they started shifting to catch deer to sell or run a farm.
They caught deer from the sky as they hunted. When they found them, they threw a net on the deer from a helicopter and some people jumped out to connect a net with their machine, then they lifted and carried the deer.
Although this way helped them catch many deer, it was very dangerous because they were precipitous mountains to approach by a helicopter and when the helicopter lost balance, people also lost their life.
According to “Deer Industry New Zealand”, in the past few years, the deer industry in New Zealand was down because the prices of sheep and cattle got higher than venison and many deer farmers reduced the number of deer. But now venison prices are recovering and many farmers start rebuilding their breeding herds.
If you have a chance to eat New Zealand venison, I hope you will remember an older generation of people who worked hard in the deer industry and the fascinating story of deer in New Zealand.