Wilkins Farming | | Deer, Venison & Velvet
New Zealand deer are raised in spectacular surroundings with fresh-flowing rivers, abundant pastures and ample sunshine, where farming practices are clean and free of hormones. The high level of attention to detail in breeding and farm management emphasis the importance of selection for improving meat yield and quality. In this environment lean and tender venison is created.
Deer, Venison, Velvet, New Zealand, Southland, South Island, Breeding Management, High growth rate progeny
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History, Why Wilkins, Mission and Vision


Wilkins Farming Co | WF410 and WF900


Our original bloodlines were sourced in the 1980’s and 1990’s and are based mainly on King Richard, a recognised champion sire, from Festl Park in Germany. We then crossed these German genetics with Fredrich to introduce Hungarian bloodlines to further enhance the venison growth rates and velvet production in our hind base.   Our stud started recording pedigrees by tagging our first fawns at birth from November 1995.

In 2001 we initiated our first AI (Artificial Insemination) Programme, to introduce genetics from best in class sires. In addition, in 2004 we undertook our first Embryo Transfer (ET) Programme, identifying and multiplying the best genetics from our herd.

In 2008 we purchased the Stanfield Eastern European Red Deer stud, to strategically add substantial venison and antler enrichment to our breeding programme.

To add further venison depth to our hind base we then purchased the Doncaster Red Deer herd in 2012.

In 2015, in conjunction with Mt Hutt Station, we travelled throughout Europe and England to hand select World Leading Red Deer. After purchasing a number of stags, they were consolidated to England for further farming, where semen collection was undertaken for shipment back to our home farm in New Zealand.

Further, in 2018 we purchased the finest Woburn New Zealand herd, from Henrietta Dowager Duchess of Bedford. The stunning herd was originally sourced from the family’s English Estate, one of the oldest managed deer herds in the world, dating back 100’s of years.

As indicated by this brief historical insight, our dedication and investment (and that of other breeders whose herds we have purchased), is illustrative of our commitment to both the industry, and more specifically the ongoing development of our hind base.

Wilkins Farming Co | Our Land And River

Why Wilkins Farming Co.?

Located in beautiful Southland, New Zealand is the Wilkins Deer Stud.  Since arriving in the 1860’s, the Wilkins family are proud to call the vast pastures and hillsides that run alongside the Mataura River of this spectacular location home.

The Wilkins Farming stud has been breeding deer for over five decades.  Our breeding herd are run over two properties containing both extensive tussock and over-sown hills, and productive flat land to ensure they are performance tested in both environments.

Committed to the deer industry, we believe in combining our considerable expertise and experience, with innovation and cutting-edge technology.

Our superior herd of over 1500 DNA tested and fully recorded hinds, is a result of our absolute unwavering commitment to our strategy and vision for over 50 years.  Investing in the best genetics and application of world leading technology has resulted in numerous record-breaking successes such as:

  • Churchill – W12eBV #1 English +17.9 (April English Sire Summary 2019)
  • Rock Me – 20 kg of OG Velvet at 4 years of age
  • Tui – CDeBV #1 European -12 days (April European and Composite Summary 2019)
  • WF 410/16 – Weighing a massive 291 kg in January 2019, we believe this stag is the biggest 2 year old stag ever sold at auction in New Zealand
  • WF 900/16 – Recording a colossal W12eBV of +22.10, we believe this is a New Zealand record for this type
  • Maple – 6.7 kg of SA2 Velvet at 2 years of age

We are driven by success to remain the top performers in our field, proudly standing behind our product.

+ view the Herd Sire Profiles


Our aim is to produce a high value animal with a venison focus, from an efficient maternal weight hind using the latest technology and best genetics available.


To achieve this, we use world leading genetics and combine them with performance measures such as ultrasound scanning, CT scanning, DEERSelect, progeny testing and DNA testing.

Through recording key trait data, it is easier to mate the right hind to the appropriate stag to achieve specific breeding goals. During the selection process, we are constantly reviewing breed values, bloodlines and performance to date.

Our venison breeding programme employs the following foundations;

  1. An average adult hind body weight of 118+ kg, which assists in creating satisfactory breeding efficiency. (This enables us to get this hinds progeny to the high value early spring market)
  2. An animal with a high carcass yield, that also has an increased percentage of more valuable meat cuts, in order to deliver higher returns.
  3. Temperament, fertility, constitution, type and then calving date are our key measures for successful breeding.
  4. A strong velvet base delivers diversity and potential income over and above venison.
+ view the Deer Technology