So I'm out at 5.00 on a bright and beautiful morning yesterday to meet with Caz518 who has joined the syndicate this year and show him part of the ground.
On the way to meet him I realised I'd forgotten my sticks - rats!!!
We meet up no problem and have a brief chat then I take him to the last high seat that he couldn't find.
Since he's new to the ground I let him choose where he wants to stalk and he decided to remain in the area around that high seat.
No problem I bid my fair well and head round to the other side of the ground.
At 6.30 I'm in the high seat and waiting for something to start moving.
Only 15 minutes later I caught sight of a doe but she's browsing away from me at about 200yds.
I gave it another 5 minutes then decided to stalk in on her incase there was an attending buck.
I got to within 100yds and bingo I spot the buck 25yds to the right of the doe.
With no sticks I decided to stalk in to about 50yds to be certain of a kill.
So another 10 minutes pass as I track/stalk them through a light spinney of pines that have been partially wind blown.
Finally I get myself propped up against a toppled tree's root ball and get ready for the shot.
As the buck’s about to enter thick cover I give a short loud grunt and he turns broadside - perfect.
The shot is on I squeeze the trigger and - click - what the hell!!! A blinkin misfire.
The click of the miss fire and cycling the round alert the deer and they're off into the cover.
That's me cleared the deer in that area so I decided to head over to the next high seat.
I get myself sorted in the seat and wait.
Some where in the distance I hear a dog barking and the wildlife is making all the right noises and everything’s right with the world.
Another 10 minutes pass and I spot movement at the far side of the cleared area and check through the scope to find an older buck in russet coat with a limp – a very good candidate for the cull.
I watch him for 5 minutes browsing the edge of the wood and heading in my direction.At this point I loose sight of him in a slight dip and carry on watching.
Minutes pass and I think that I’ve lost him when out pops a buck about 80yds away. Not the old one but a younger one still in a grey coat! He proceeds to browse the vegetation and then lay up. At this point I spy the older buck back where he originally appeared; again browsing and heading in my direction but on diagonal line with the young buck. As I carry on watching the older buck continues heading in my general direction but occasionally sniffing the air and looking in the direction of the younger buck. At about 100yds he turns and stops looking at the youngster and then barks a couple of times. Having never seen or heard this it took me a minute to realise that the two are obviously adversaries and the barking I’d heard earlier was the old guy’s challenge.
Any way the youngster gets up and faces the old guy the two then advance towards each other sizing each other up; they do a short dash towards each other and stop about 30yds apart. The old guy barks a couple of times and then they clash for probably 5-10 seconds before the youngster backs off and turns tail with the old guy in pursuit.
It then dawns on me that if I don’t draw their attention they’ll be past me at about 50yds and I won’t get the shot off. So I try and bark/grunt at them but they are so engrossed in each other they don’t notice and are passed in the blink of an eye – bugger!!!!
I wait a minute and reason that the old boy won’t waste his energy especially if he has a limp and the youngster’s fled so he may be over the next rise 80yds to the left. So down I climb from the seat and stalk in. Brilliant - he’s through the spinney of pine trees and into the edge of the next clearing. So I get set up at about 40yds and the shot is on again. I squeeze the trigger and click – bugger another misfire – no I’d forgotten to load a round after getting down from the high seat arghhhhh………
The buck’s alerted but not moved so I still have a chance. I cycle a round in as I do this the buck barks and moves off but I bark back and he stops at about 75yds WOO-HOO. I take aim the shot’s on and fire…….. Thwack the sound of a solid hit reaches my ears as the buck disappears but I’m confident he’ll be down close by. So I put a fresh round in and walk round; sure enough, paint is on the ground, in large amounts and easy to track. 20yds on and there he is – an old guy with miss-shaped antlers. A perfect cull beast!.
A quick thanks to Jelen for posting the video on how to gralloch on here as it seemed to me to be very quick compared to usual (the speed may also have been due to the fact that I was being eaten alive by the midgies).
After the initial disappointment of missing the first beast it turned out to be a great morning listening to roe bark for the first time and also watching them spar for the first time and getting a good cull beast. Absolutely brill…..
The deer sack is one of Poppins’ Sika sacks (ever hopeful that I am of getting a Sika!!!!!) which I can thoroughly recommend.
Hard luck to CAZ518 who didn’t get anything this time. Better luck next time mate and there’s a few about