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Thread: Help with browse lines please

  1. #1

    Help with browse lines please

    How do you define a browse line? Is it where bushes are eaten from ground up and/or where shrubs are eaten down to the ground?

    I've been trying to persuade the farmer where I shoot bunnies that he has too many munties, as there is nothing growing in the spinnies and small wooded areas other than nettles and they are bare within with no wild flowers anywhere. There is clear evidence of foliage being chewed down to ground level and every time I go out I see or hear them!!

    They also have a lot of hawthorn hedges between fields that are bare in certain areas up to about 2 1/2ft high from the ground. The more I look around the less new growth I see and considering it's a 1000 acres I don't remember once snagging meself on a bramble!!!

    I've also seen more roe lately but less evidence of browsing higher up, but then I'm still learning so maybe am unable to spot the right signs as yet!


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  2. #2
    Strictly the browse 'line' will be just that - ie ground upwards to whatever height the relevant deer can reach. Keep in mind that Roe & Fallow ( possibly others ) commonly go up on their back legs to get to extra juicy bits!

    Trees often struggle until a leader gets above deer height - so you end up with bell bottom trees, then as they grow in reverses.

    ​With the muntjac issue, you could try fencing a couple of plots - just a few metres square in likely spots, take pictures from same position for before and after comparison. Spring is the best time, but you may get results anytime - depending what is in there.
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  3. #3
    As above just don't forget to make the fencing tall enough as lots of Nature Trusts try this just for the deer to jump into the exclusion zone.
    Rabbits do alot of damage to flora also are there still lots of them about and Hares also have a look at the damage to see if its Rabbit-Hare or Deer quite easy to tell what is the culprit, photo evidence might help a trail cam etc.
    Any idea of density of Muntjac?
    Too Old Soon Too Late Smart

  4. #4
    I'm not sure of density but I've put out a trailcam 5 times in the last couple of weeks in different locations and every time there's been muntjac on it! We see them every time we go out bunny bashing but it's tricky at the moment as the headlands around the fields are so long!! I'm out again tnite so will take some pics of the hedges I think are worst affected. No Muntjac have been shot there for over 2 years, maybe more since the farm manager trimmed a few up himself!

    Loads of hares about as we are only allowed to shoot the injured or big old fella's and the bunnies are a git to see because of the above reasons. It's block farmed with rape this year so another 4-5 weeks will mean we'll see more once it's cut.

    I like the fence idea thanks there are a few places it could be done which are clearly hit hard,

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