Deer Management in the UK

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In our own woods, the damage is there for all to see. Indeed, the main link hedge between our woods and the RSPB reserve has a distinct browse line at fallow nose height. There have been lots of experiments with different approaches to deer fencing too, but none of it has really worked, with the deer mostly holding the coppice regrowth in check. This is a serious problem, for this is the very habitat that the nightingales and other breeding warblers need. Against this background, those of us who surround the reserve have been asking the RSPB to start a culling policy for some time.

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Aside from helping to achieve its own objectives, this would be helpful to the neighbours. For many years our situation has been that we get a bit of a cull early in the doe season, but then the deer become largely nocturnal; they rest up in the RSPB reserve during the day and venture out on to our ground at night, which makes the completion of a decent cull impossible.

Fallow Deer Stalking in Lincolnshire

Woodland woes In the meantime, our woodland habitat has become poorer and poorer, with the vital shrub layer being denuded and regrowth from our modest coppicing activities being hammered. Even with protective measures, most of our works have been very slow to respond. Read more. Regular readers of our newsletter Deerbytes may recall we recently covered this story, which has highlighted the danger plastic waste represents to wildlife.

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The sika deer of Nara are sadly not the only ones to be affected by ingesting discarded plastic. Deer will frequently sample unusual items which can ultimately become the cause of their death and have been found later with items such as plastic bags and baler twine filling their stomachs. They can also entangle themselves in rope or netting which has been carelessly left lying around.

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Deer in parks or other places where they are habituated to hand feeding by humans are especially prone to eating unsuitable items. Jan and Shantel Louise, from local volunteer group Harold Hill Deer Aid, as well as Lorraine Stevens, contacted a vet who came to help them perform an emergency caesarian in an attempt to rescue the fawn, but sadly the fawn had already died as well.

Welcome to The British Deer Society Our aim - BDS aims to be the go-to place for objective and unbiased information on the biology of deer and methods of deer management, humane treatment and control. Welcome to The British Deer Society Research - BDS provides funding and support for high quality deer research to inform government s , academia, trade organisations, members, the media and the public.

Welcome to The British Deer Society Membership - BDS embraces a varied membership ranging from professional biologists, enthusiastic naturalists, keen photographers, wildlife artists and chefs to deer managers and stalkers. Welcome to The British Deer Society Education - BDS aims to improve general education and understanding of all deer-related issues, through active engagement and access to high quality educational materials.

Truly 'wild habitats' no longer exist in Britain.

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We use the countryside to produce food crops, graze animals, grow trees and for a wide range of leisure activities. We build roads through the countryside to link towns and cities and our needs generally take precedence over those of deer and other wildlife.


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Animals have learned to adapt to the areas left to them and to utilise parks and gardens as the natural countryside dwindles. The urban fox is well known, but the muntjac, our smallest deer, is almost as common in some urban areas. It is equally important to prevent deer from causing unacceptable damage to crops and trees and to protect other creatures sharing their habitat from the results of overgrazing.

Six deer species live in the wild in Britain.

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