I can almost sense the reaction of horror, what does he mean ? the blithering idiot !! Let me explain. We at Garry Gualach had very strict guidelines concerning what was and was not a beast fit to shoot, always leaving animals with potential or we just " thought might come on " in a year or two, this was and i'm sure still is, in keeping with all decent estates, the majority I should think, and is excellent practice. The hours spent lying in a peat hag or with water from a burn trickling its way towards the unmentionable regions, staring at deer through binoculars until the eye's got sore, are hours I would never swap or regret, habits and behaviour and recognizing what is and isn't, are all learnt this way and nothing stands up to this kind of experience, period. Our neighbour's were firm advocates of the practice " leave the best ", and those estates have some very fine herds indeed, apart from one, a government body who's sole purpose at that time was to grow tree's. We, if you like, were a buffer zone, all our ground marched with the forestry and that was the problem, poorly maintained fence's and a forestry keeper who's job description seemed to be " kill them all " meant that all our best efforts on the hill were nullified when the deer found their way into the tree's, please bear in mind these were mature forests when I was there and damage caused by the deer was minimal, a spell of very poor weather would see the hill almost empty of deer, the hinds that were hefted onto the forest ( calves born there didn't like to stray to far and were minded to remain that way ) would attract the stags in, and the tree's became a kind of vacuum, spotlighting at night and shooting from vehicles is abhorrent practice but suited the forestry keeper best and to be entirely fair was his job, but this of course made our efforts on the hill a pointless exercise. The planting of tree's in area's that were prime and natural calving ground, both historically and instinctively for the deer, was the initial problem, hinds will go where suits them best and when determined will overcome almost any obstacle to get there. We never saw the same stag two years running, the herds of hinds on the hill almost vanished, all stags became travelers between the adjacent estates and the forest and it became our job to catch them in-between, and yet we stuck to our practice of selective shooting because two wrongs don't make a right, and we could hold our heads high and show our neighbours that we had respect for them, their efforts and of course for ourselves.