Colin Murdoch

Tranquilliser Gun

Tranquilliser Gun - Colin Murdoch

Colin Murdoch (b. 1929, d. 2008) of Timaru was working with colleagues studying introduced Himalayan thar (wild goat-antelope!) populations in New Zealand, and had the idea that if a dose of tranquilliser could be safely projected into one of the animals it would be a lot easier to catch, examine, tag and release. Murdoch was a pharmacist who had a veterinary practice on the side. During the Second World War, rifles and shotguns were not imported into New Zealand, so as a serious hunter, Colin became an expert at fixing and modifying guns. With the motive and the means, Murdoch began to develop the range of tranquilliser rifles, pistols and darts that revolutionised the way animals were studied and treated all over the world.


Our own Daktari of the south
Murdoch put his stamp on the world
The dart
Colin's eye patch was not related to his fondness for playing with guns. Honestly.

More Information

Wikipedia article on Murdoch


Photograph credit: Mike White/North & South