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Thread: Time for a change?

  1. #1

    Time for a change?

    I have been fortunate enough to have permission to stalk on 2 areas of land in this area for the past 5 or 6 years. At all times I have respected the landowners wishes, and have paid the going rate for the privilige. I've never bothered with formal agreements, as the land is owned by acquaintances.
    The growth in demand for stalking is so great, that I am no longer the sole stalker on any of my ground as "there are more than enough deer to go round". Unfortunately, there aren't and its a rarity to see them now.
    I've also been trying to get permission from a friend to stalk a large block of woodland with a good population of deer. He enjoys seeing them, but accepts that responsible management would be beneficial. Over the past week he has found two roe (one buck, one doe) that have been left by poachers. He feels that his deer are under so much pressure that they should be left in peace as much as possible....so, no stalking for me, then.
    So, I'm now faced with the choice of packing in a sport I love, or paying for accompanied stalking that I can't afford on a regular basis.
    I'm not looking for sympathy, as I've been lucky up til now, but this situation has wound me up. It might be better for my sanity to find something else to do in my spare time...but I'll more than likely hang in there in the hope that something comes up.
    Last edited by Moonraker68; 13-06-2011 at 15:21.

  2. #2
    Some thing will turn up mate but i did realise how some people were effected by the chance to stalk deer.I have been lucky and have lots of places to go .Through the internet i realised that there were people that would do almost anything to get stalking on ground and if i were you i would go back to the friend who has a block and sort some deer management plan out and that would include removing the threat of poachers. Wish you luck mate.

  3. #3
    Thanks, 6 pointer, I appreciate your good wishes. Had a long chat with my mate this afternoon and I think I'd be home and dry if it weren't for the poaching problem. The wood is next to a country lane and is easy ground for poachers, might have to offer to sit out (unarmed) for a few evenings to keep an eye on things for him.

  4. #4
    There is no easy answer to this one.

    Here in NI, there are too many people chasing too few deer - or at least it seems that way. Good stalking is very hard to come by, and it has taken me years to build up a decent bit of ground. In reality there are only about 350 FAC's conditioned for deer stalking here in NI, on a very rural land area of nearly 4.5 million acres. That is over 12,000 acres per licensed stalker. Certainly, we have a serious poaching problem. My best guess is that at least half the deer shot in NI are shot illegally with 22 CF's and lamps.

    In mainland UK, there are a lot of people depending upon stalking for their living. Combine that with the very high human population density in the South of England and stalking, shooting, fishing etc are going to come under serious pressure.

    Money talks these days. It is going to be ever harder to hold on to a decent and exclusive bit of ground without paying for it.
    Brian.

    Just because you are paranoid, doesn't mean they aren't out to get you......

  5. #5
    I think the fact that this ground does not have regular visits from people like you as a stalker, the poachers see an easy target! I know the owners of land that I stalk on are delighted to see me going about at all hours.

  6. #6
    Moonraker68,

    I'm sorry to hear of you situation but you say that you were paying 'the going rate' to acquaintances for the stalking and they are allowing others to stalk as well. Do these others also 'pay the going rate'? If so then might someone be laughing all the way to the bank? If not, are they getting free stalking off of your back?

    If nothing else your predicament illustrates the need to obtain written agreements, no matter how informal the arrangement may be, and especially if money is changing hands. Ideally, if for no other reason than safety considerations, it should give the stalker sole rights to take the deer and if the landowner baulks at that you have to ask yourself why.

    Good luck with pastures anew.

  7. #7
    Don't even think of packing in mate, I won't let you for starters !!!
    You know my feelings regarding posting here but, this is too much to let go.
    You gave me advice a while ago not to let the ******** grind you down, so don't !
    I'll help you all I can, a flask of coffe, an NV and a nasty Welshman in the dark will put the fear of God into the buggers.
    Mates are Mates !
    HOW MANY HALF TRUTHS MAKE A STORY.....ALL OF THEM.....JUST NOT THE WHOLE STORY !

  8. #8
    Quote Originally Posted by Orion View Post
    Moonraker68,

    I'm sorry to hear of you situation but you say that you were paying 'the going rate' to acquaintances for the stalking and they are allowing others to stalk as well. Do these others also 'pay the going rate'? If so then might someone be laughing all the way to the bank? If not, are they getting free stalking off of your back?

    If nothing else your predicament illustrates the need to obtain written agreements, no matter how informal the arrangement may be, and especially if money is changing hands. Ideally, if for no other reason than safety considerations, it should give the stalker sole rights to take the deer and if the landowner baulks at that you have to ask yourself why.

    Good luck with pastures anew.
    Its easy to say that agreements should be in place but when its a case of stalk without the agreement or dont stalk at all then unfortunately the second option is usually the winner, here in N Wales stalking is very rare and I count myself really fortunate to have some of the best bits but an agreement... not a chance and I probably am not the only one on the ground and paying a decent amount of money for the privelidge. Like you say the owner is laughing all the way to the bank but if you dont you leave the rifle in the cabinet cause someone else will pay.

    Leon

  9. #9
    Thanks for the comments, lads. Ground is very hard to come by, and it's a real kick in the orchestra's when you realise it is no longer exclusively yours. I have offered to go on poacher-watch for my friend; it will be a result if it stops out-of-season does being shot, even if I don't pick up the stalking. Ade, you might be getting a call - I reckon you'd hit them a bit harder than I could!

    Not sure what my fellow stalking tenants are paying, although one landowner has previously complained about not getting what he'd been promised in the past. Needless to say, I make a point of paying the proper ammount when it's due.

    I haven't done my DSC1, as my FEO was happy that I'd had sufficient supervision to remove the need for a mentor. I will get qualified now, and start looking to lease land formally, with a proper written agreement to safeguard both me and the landowner. Haven't advertised my kit just yet!

  10. #10
    Quote Originally Posted by Moonraker68 View Post
    Haven't advertised my kit just yet!
    .....after our earlier chat, you'd better not!! It needs to make a trek up North!!

    (I'll bring you some more home-made Damson gin to lift your spirits - even if it tastes 'orrid, it'll get the rust off your garden tools, strip paint off the bannisters & clean the drains nicely.....)
    Nothing is worse than having an itch you can never scratch

    "...Nicely just doesn't cut the cheese....." A new twist on management-speak courtesy of a colleague.

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