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Thread: What is the public's perception of deer stalking?

  1. #1

    What is the public's perception of deer stalking?

    If you'll forgive me for saying this, I have read a lot of slightly introverted and paranoid comments on this site about 'the public' and their 'perception' of deer stalking and gun ownership and how, in effect, 'they' (whoever 'they' are) would like shut us down and only allow 'professional' deer control. The thing is, I've only very rarely encountered this type of attitude myself (except here). In fact, most people I talk to seem very interested in what I do. They accept that deer and other wild animals cause issues which make it beneficial to us and the animals themselves for the numbers to be controlled and equally those people seem to accept that a gun is frequently as good a tool as any for the job. Even my few vegetarian friends accept this. None of the people I talk to have any problem with country folk and even non-country folk owning and using guns, provided it is done safely and responsibly.

    A particular, recently started, thread on this site mentions 'public perception' of stalking in terms that suggests there is a problem for us. Now, I can see that there are fringe groups who do object very noisily and rather hypocritically, like those hunt saboteurs (who preach pacifism and condemn the hurting of animals and then put Masters of hounds in hospital by beating them unconscious with iron bars) but I have never regarded such trouble making extremists as any sort of fundamental threat to shooting sport, a worrying and violent nuisance definitely but not a threat to responsible gun ownership.

    So what really is the 'public's perception' of deer stalking?

  2. #2
    It probably depends on what part of the country you are in.
    The more urban the area, the less folk may understand field sports.
    Just a guess.
    "Don't say I didnae warn ye !"

  3. #3
    Never had a problem. I have had the odd "why would you want to shoot a fox" thing but just reply with the truth, that they run off with newborn lambs and piglets and kill for the fun of it. Most (all?) then agree the best thing is shoot them as there's too many anyway.

  4. #4
    SD Regular willie_gunn's Avatar
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    Oxfordshire, Wiltshire, Berkshire....and Sutherland
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    The ones I have presented to and spoken with would echo your comments.
    O wad some Power the giftie gie us to see oursels as ithers see us!

  5. #5
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    I have put a few post on the topic you mentioned. I find most people are ok with it as long as they don't see piles of bloody bodies or heads blown to bits etc etc.
    How anyone can take pictures of that and post it anywhere is totally beyond me.
    Unless we keep our hobby or job or whatever it is to us, as humane and clean as possible we will be branded as murderers, monsters, killers and worse

    Don't ever forget we kill things and a lot of people object to that, and I don't blame them. So cowboys and inhumane shooters you are ruining it for the rest of us.

  6. #6
    Some people enjoy the notoriety of being involved with an 'edgy' pursuit and seek to cultivate that wherever possible.

    Whilst some people just take opposition at face value and try and educate and inform as best they can. You won't convert everyone but it's surprising who will come around in the face of a calm and reasoned argument.

    I have no qualms about discussing my profession (single handed gamekeeper) with anyone. I'm incredibly proud of the standards I set for myself and the quality and integrity of the days I put on.

    Oh, and if you get invited into my kitchen, you'll find a tasteful picture montage of three of my favourite fox kills from my early keepering days that my mum had framed for me

  7. #7
    Quote Originally Posted by Crosshair243 View Post
    Some people enjoy the notoriety of being involved with an 'edgy' pursuit and seek to cultivate that wherever possible.
    Strongly agree - used to provoke reaction rather than enter into friendly, informative discussion
    For Gods sake - don't tell her how much I've spent

  8. #8
    SD Regular teyhan1's Avatar
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    Berkshire then Dorset now Herefordshire with a good dose of Dorset
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    I stalk some very urban areas.
    Recent conversation with two walkers.

    Me: "Good morning." ( inside deer fence, walkers on road.)
    Them: "Are you supposed to be there? Who gave you permission? What are you shooting?"
    Me: "Mr *** gave me permission to cull some deer as he was having problems"
    Them: I thought he wasn't culling them. I shall have a word with him. I hope you fail."

    There are many people that will not accept any excuse for shooting. Most reasonable people will accept what you do so long as you are polite and are willing to take the time to explain what you do, the legalities and don't go looking like you've just signed up to the Taliban militia. Sometimes you have to also put them right like the bloke who said he was going to buy a crossbow and have a go, on my permission. I had to put him right.
    “Man surprised me most about humanity. Because he sacrifices his health in order to make money.Then he sacrifices money to recuperate his health. And then he is so anxious about the future that he does not enjoy the present; the result being that he does not live in the present or the future; he lives as if he is never going to die, and then dies having never really lived.”........Dalai Lama

  9. #9
    My next door neighbour is anti, she would quite often have ago if she saw me with my slips or a box full of rabbits, her husband on the other hand, used to apologise after she had gone, and said he understood everything needs to be controled, thankfully she doesn't speak and just ignores me now.

    I think most people are sensible and know everything needs to be controlled,

  10. #10
    Good thread. We have lots of different people from all over in are butchers shop and generally the one that live in the country understand the need for the culling of deer in fact if I had a pound for every time someone said ,you can come and shoot the muntjac in my garden I would be a rich man .its the people from the city's that don't seem to get it but if you spend a little time to explain why we do it the most of the time they can see the good that comes form stalking and often buy some venison as well as we always have a good stock of it , as for meeting people when out out stalking most of the time they say ,well they need thining out as there is to Manny ,but there will always be one that hates what we do normally a dog walker who is down for the weekend from London but I just smile and be as polite as possible

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