Looking for advice from anyone who has gone through an application for the above, in particular any obstacles put in your way by your force and how you overcame them.
I applied for one several years ago and gave the reasons as 'humane and safe dispatch of wounded deer...' I was knocked back at the time after my force sought advice from the Deer Commission for Scotland (DCS). The result was I contacted the DCS and managed to get the bloke that had spoken to my Firearms Licensing Dept. It was an interesting chat that included comments like, 'you must be a poor shot to need one...' and, 'why don't you carry your .22RF rifle for that purpose...'. (yeh, more likely to ricochet and 2 rifles slung on my back, the most ridiculous suggestion yet). My arguments were based on the dangers of firing a rifle at a wounded stag from close distance with the risk of a ricochet and the difficulty in following a beast that has run of into an enclosed woodland with me trying to follow with a rifle. Anyway, after the knock-back I let it go.
Now, as some of my woods are almost (not quite) impenetrable especially with a rifle, I am in the process of applying again for one. I spoke with a very helpful member of staff there today and although he said they issue very few in Scotland, each case would be judged on its own merits. I said I would be prepared to take one of them to my ground and show them exactly what I could be faced with, especially if its involving a wounded and pissed off sika stag. Using a pistol once a year IMO justifies its possession.
One of the suggestions they offer to avoid a wounded deer running off is, if out with a client I should be prepared to take a follow up shot if necessary should the client shoot the beast poorly. I am not knocking him, its in their guidelines!!! I explained that by me watching the reaction of the beast on being shot, it gives an indication as to where it has been struck and the last thing I would be thinking about would be aiming my rifle at it waiting for a client take his shot! I also highlighted that sika often don't venture far from cover and a couple of steps could see them disappear.
I am curious as to why more and more stalkers don't consider the use of a pistol. Is it because there are a lot of experts out there happy to use the knife in the atlas joint, or simply don't mind using the rifle at close range on the odd occasion it happens. Personally, on the few occasions I have, I am just waiting for the pain of a ricochet!!!
Is it further costs that prevent people applying or the suspicion they just won't be entertained?
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