A while ago Wayne and I conversed about calling muntjac and he very kindly invited me over to see if he could trick one again for me. Now due to the proverbial unforseen circumstances i could not make it over for a while, and during this while a lot of new growth has spurted up in his woods, making seeing munjac very difficult. Not being one to be bested by mere undergrowth, Wayne invited me over last night and off I went.
We loaded up our gear into Waynes vehicle, then he fetched Max and we set off.
Now I will give you some idea of how good he is, and how well he knows his ground. Plan A was thwarted by campers in one wood, plan B scuppered by erroneous dog walkers who had parked over a gate he wanted to get through, so plan C it was.
We stalked very quietly into a gorgeous piece of wood, and into a place where we could see along a ride and he tried some fairly aggressive calling. Unfortunately although Max could wind the deer we could not see any in the thick cover. After a fair while Wayne pulled the plug on it and we went to plan D. Back to the truck and off to a high seat, which is beautifully placed so you can see along two rides.
On the quiet walk into the highseat Max was showing us deer (which we could not see) all the way in. There were Muntjac slots everywhere! We reached the seat made the rifle safe and climbed aboard, leaving Max on the floor tucked up under the seat.
I love being in a wood as the evening closes in, we were hearing noises all around. Pigeons were clapping, pheasants calling and finches were everywhere. We had a quiet chat about life, funny things that have happened, you know the stuff, then we settled down. I was busy watching a wagtail when Wayne pointed down by the side of the highseat, there was a young muntjac buck, gleaming in the dappled sunshine not 12 yards from us. He had come out of almost impenatrable brambles without a sound. Now I tried making a noise like a ash tree as I moved very, very slowly with my rifle, but I spooked him, and he was off in a flash. He didn't bark though! Max, however, made a disdainful huffing noise and looked away in disgust at my ineptitude! He's such a critic that dog.
After fluffing that opportunity, I shook Waynes hand and congratulated him on showing me a deer and apologised for not being "switched on" enough. He made light of it and said "just wait and see". So we did. The sun went off the wood and the temperature dropped and dusk began to settle and suddenly there was one coming out of the wood about 60/70 yards up the ride, Wayne said, "it's the same buck" and I took the shot. He dropped on the spot and thrashed a bit, Wayne told me to reload, which I duly did, and we waited. When the buck was still we climbed out of the seat and the three of us walked forward to the buck. Max was elated, so was I, my first muntjac buck
He may have been small, but he was perfect, more than could be said for my shot placement. I had taken a slight quartering shot and should have been further forward really. But there was no damage found to the rumen when Wayne expertly gralloched him. Max, I think, forgave me!
Many thanks to Wayne, and Max, for their fabulous hospitality and for sharing their expertese with me. I had a great time!!!!!!!!!!!!!!