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Thread: Best stalking weather.

  1. #1

    Best stalking weather.

    Having just got myself a place on a syndicate near my home I am keen to find the answer to a number of questions.

    1. How does the weather affect deer movement/ activity? Is it worth going out if it is windy and/or wet. Obviously I am as keen as mustard to go out all the time and learn, but dont want to waste time when there is clearly no hope of a sighting.

    2. Part of the lease is FC plantations and there are signs up telling all and sundry that they are free to roam about and enjoy the woodland as long as they dont nick machinery or damage trees etc. How can I deal with this reasonably without upsetting horse riders and dog walkers at some point?

    3. If I want to get to a high seat before first light would it be okay to use a small torch or is this going to spook deer? I dont want to get lost either , it is 1000 acres , even though I have checked out most things during the day, obviously.

    4. Some joker seems to be pushing over one high seat in particular. Is it best to just get it shifted? Should it be hidden away a bit more? This is in the FC ''playground'' by the way.

    Any help invaluable, thanks in advance.

  2. #2
    1. I was told that deer, Roe in particular, are like people - if we dont want to go out in it, they dont either.

    2. You can't. Keep a low profile and steer clear. If possible search for 'secret' places that are hard to access on foot and focus your efforts there.

    3. Don't see why not, they dont move that much when my headlights shine on them! Try a red filter?

    4. Move it and then hide it. You can bet the same joker will turn up for a but of pushing over when you are sitting in it, you tell them where to go, they call the police out of spite, "bad man with gun threatened me". You know the rest.

    10 times out of 10 if you are on foot stalking properly, then people can walk right by you and not know you are there. You will be aware of them before they are of you. Just cut your cloth to fit.

    Enjoy your new stalking!

  3. #3
    Good reply,

    I would add if you think you may bump into members of the public, make sure you have your paperwork with you, authority licence etc.

    and brush up on the reasons why we control deer you will no doubt need to explain to people.

  4. #4
    I know of on FC lease that puts out signs before every stalking period!

  5. #5
    If it`s mainly Roe you have on the ground then my experience tells me that they don`t like cold wet weather, but love to get onto sunny patches to warm up in the early morning. This is not to say they don`t feed when it`s windy or rainy, it just means they do as we would do, like nix niveus says, they look for the sheltered side of the wood or stay on the calm ridelines.
    If roe are not getting too bothered with people or are used to seeing the public they will feed out all day feeding in about 2 hour bouts.
    If it`s reds you have, then they are a lot more tolerant than roe, and will feed out while it`s chucking it down.

    Its always worth going without the gun on a few occasions, this way you are under no pressure to shoot something and it allows you to gather more information about what is around and where its moving, check for slots and droppings, hair on fences, fraying damage and scent marking signs.
    Just an idea.

    Hope this helps a little.


  6. #6
    Some good answers about Roe. They'll generally stay sheltered under the trees until the rain has penetrated the leaves and big rain drops are dropping through the branches.....usually after a days rain.
    Roe also hate a cold wind so look for the sheltered hillside that has less wind and pay attention to the sun. A decent break in the clouds and the sun shining will have the Roe out in the open to get a heat on their backs.

    Highseats - It's likely that some armchair 'eco terrorist' has associated highseats with slaughtering poor wee bambi. A possible solution is to pop along to your local RSPB site and buy some of their stickers and logos from the souvenir shops. Stick/fix these prominently on the highseat and perhaps a small sign saying ' Caution - Authorised Persons Only. For Use in Raptor Survey.' They'll likely think twice before pushing the next one over unless they've actually seen you in one. It worked for me after a spate of vandalism.

    If there's alot of walkers on the land then try not to wear cammo clothing. Stick with plain green. Joe public sees you in cammo and with a rifle and instantly thinks 'Rambo' - i know it's pathetic but true.

    If alot of people use the land then there will be a pattern to the movement - dog walkers and joggers in the morning and especially heavyily on the weekend. Deer will avoid them like the plague so try to be on the land and stalking when and where they aren't. Late afternoon and early evening will likely be good times.
    Leave the rifle at home, get yourself a decent map of the land and do a time:movement survey - what time are the dog walkers active and do they follow a particular route/path? Is there a particular area that isn't regularly used? Is there a particular animal/site/view that attracts people to the forest? When is it busiest and when is it quietest? This will give you an idea of when to go, where to go and is will reassure the FC that you take risk assessment seriously.

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