For a change, this write up will be relatively short and sweet compared to my usual tomes!!
Met up with a couple of members of a local DMG I am part of for the first time in a few months where we control the Muntjac in a nice pocket of woodland. 5am meet up to sort where we were each stalking and I had the bit nearest to where we park up.
I took stock of my block, checked the wind and decided to head along the edge nearest to where the sun was rising as it was only 5.30am and if I'd gone in to the woods I wouldn't see well enough to shoot for a good while. Turned out to be a good call (which I was chuffed about as I'd thought about it!!) as I had only gone about 300 yards and spotted movement directly in front of me up the ride. This is where I now realise you need good optics, both on the rifle and round your neck.
Through the dim light I could make out it was a munty mooching straight to me about 100 yards or so away. I got ready on the sticks and tracked him through the scope getting closer and closer and just when I thought I was going to have to shout, he got to a gap in the hedge where the light was peeping through and obliged by turning to look through the gap!! This presented a nice broadside target and also a bit more light to focus the crosshairs of the Meopta as it was still only 5.40am! Gentle squeeze and the report from the .243 resonated around the woods as he dropped on the spot, only 50 yards away!!
He turned out to be the only beast shot between us, although I did see another couple but they disappeared across the rides too far away for a shot. I also bumped a Roe (not sure of sex) as it gruffly barked it's disapproval at being disturbed and saw my 1st definite Roe rutting ring along another ride.
My day to day stalking is on mainly arable land and didn't realise how much I missed the magical feeling of being in the woods, and also how intense and 100% switched on you need to be woodland stalking in comparison!!
He was a proper battler with broken tusks, a shredded ear and if you can make it out in the last pic a scar down his back!!
I took the pictures in my garden when I got home as it was too dim for my phone!