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Thread: first sika help

  1. #1

    first sika help

    hi
    i should be able to get 2 weekends in on our scotish fountain forestry syndicate.
    i have seen a sika hind and a red/sika hybred hind in the last 18 months.
    I would really like to take my first sika stag this season and i have been told to pay attension to one particular part of the forest, although ive been there before and didnt see any sika.

    advice i have been given so far is to listen for whistles and move in slowly

    I have just bought a sceery caller, should i use this in reply to a whistle or if i dont hear a whistle use it to bring a unseen stag out in the open?

    any other advice to get a stag would be appreciated

    with thanks
    craggy

  2. #2
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    The first thing I'd say is you've got to do some footwork. Make sure you carry your rifle as you never know what you're going to see. Head for the wetter areas. Somewhere there are going to wallows. And if there's wallows theres stags. At some point in the day they're going to show up there. Do the usual and check you're wind, consider your backdrop- if your walking alongside a wood what will the deer in the wood be able to see, vary your patterns of approach, don't drive into the woods- park up and walk in, arrive in the dark and leave in the dark, reccy in the day, but don't get out of the car with out your rifle!!

  3. #3
    Craggy

    First thing I would say to you is don't be caught out if you use that whistle by thinking a stag will appear nicely broadside in front of you giving you all the time needed for a shot. Sika stags are aggressive and one may well come stomping out the trees very, very close to where you are. I have had them charging towards me, slowly walking straining their necks up to try and see what is there and also sneaking down inside the trees to pop out 15' from me. just be prepared...

    I knew one full time stalker who used to walk the forest roads blowing the whistle every few hundred yards and shot a lot that would simply appear for a look at what made the call.

    Search on this site as there have been a few othe threads on this very subject.

    good luck...

  4. #4
    These calls have been used for a long time now, before the screrey it was the Acme predator call at 5 a pop doing the job. Personally I think some Sika are getting to know the difference now and not coming to the call so much, but this varies from area to area in my opinion.

    Sika stags are one of the hardest to cull and also do not always come to a call. My advice would be to get to know the area well, the rut is usually at it height in late September and will carry on through October, but most of the big boys will finish by the middle of October. Much depends on weather and what part of the UK you are in. Sika stags have a loose rutting area and will patrol it during the rut and try and keep any hind coming into season close to him. They are very aggresive towards each other at this time of year and will not tolerate younger stags in the area.

    As I say investigate the area thouroughly look for wallows, scrapes, fraying. Make sure when you do go stalking you arrive there in the dark, make sure the wind is constant and in your face. Find a suitable spot with a reasonable view, if it has dark close grown timber nearby, this is where the stag is likely to appear. They quite ofter stand in such areas looking out into the light, and they pick up movement outside very quickly. They like the comfort of being in these dark areas and it gives them an advantage.

    On using the call dont go blasting away and make it sound aggresive, you are trying to imitate a younger stag, therefore trying to lure an older stag out to challenge. Do not make a call after call. By this I mean call once and then leave it for a good 10 minutes before making another call. WAIT WITH YOUR RIFLE ON THE STICKS. Do not make the mistake of calling something in and then attempting to out the rifle up. I can almost gaurantee you that if its a good stag he will see the movement and it will be game over.

    If you get lucky place your shot in the shoulders to break the legs. Sika are extreamly resiliant animals and can take a lot of punishment. Use enough gun, 270, 30.06 with a 150g bullet.
    Click image for larger version. 

Name:	Scotland pics 009.jpg 
Views:	164 
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ID:	19098

    With luck you will get a beast such as this one. Although this was off my ground in Dorset it is the heaviest Sika I have ever taken. 150lbs clean with head, legs and pluck out/off.

    Good luck
    Last edited by sikamalc; 11-09-2012 at 08:24.
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  5. #5
    During the rut, find your hinds and you'll find your stag.

  6. #6
    Quote Originally Posted by Dama View Post
    During the rut, find your hinds and you'll find your stag.
    Wise words, and remember you can never have too much patience with Sika, they rarely stray far from deep cover and in my opinion it is only the silly season with love in the air that makes them vulnerable. Malc's right with the "weak" whistles getting the mature stags to come to sort out the cheeky young pretenders. Always expect the unexpected with Sika, they will pop out anywhere, do not understand the word dead and will happily run through the thickest plantations for many sometimes hundreds of yards with no heart and not much in the way of lungs. Other than that piece of cake.

    John
    A clever man knows his strengths, a wise man knows his weaknesses

  7. #7

    Sika

    Quote Originally Posted by sikamalc View Post
    These calls have been used for a long time now, before the screrey it was the Acme predator call at 5 a pop doing the job. Personally I think some Sika are getting to know the difference now and not coming to the call so much, but this varies from area to area in my opinion.

    Sika stags are one of the hardest to cull and also do not always come to a call. My advice would be to get to know the area well, the rut is usually at it height in late September and will carry on through October, but most of the big boys will finish by the middle of October. Much depends on weather and what part of the UK you are in. Sika stags have a loose rutting area and will patrol it during the rut and try and keep any hind coming into season close to him. They are very aggresive towards each other at this time of year and will not tolerate younger stags in the area.

    As I say investigate the area thouroughly look for wallows, scrapes, fraying. Make sure when you do go stalking you arrive there in the dark, make sure the wind is constant and in your face. Find a suitable spot with a reasonable view, if it has dark close grown timber nearby, this is where the stag is likely to appear. They quite ofter stand in such areas looking out into the light, and they pick up movement outside very quickly. They like the comfort of being in these dark areas and it gives them an advantage.

    On using the call dont go blasting away and make it sound aggresive, you are trying to imitate a younger stag, therefore trying to lure an older stag out to challenge. Do not make a call after call. By this I mean call once and then leave it for a good 10 minutes before making another call. WAIT WITH YOUR RIFLE ON THE STICKS. Do not make the mistake of calling something in and then attempting to out the rifle up. I can almost gaurantee you that if its a good stag he will see the movement and it will be game over.

    If you get lucky place your shot in the shoulders to break the legs. Sika are extreamly resiliant animals and can take a lot of punishment. Use enough gun, 270, 30.06 with a 150g bullet.
    Click image for larger version. 

Name:	Scotland pics 009.jpg 
Views:	164 
Size:	546.0 KB 
ID:	19098

    With luck you will get a beast such as this one. Although this was off my ground in Dorset it is the heaviest Sika I have ever taken. 150lbs clean with head, legs and pluck out/off.

    Good luck


    If you take on board what this good man has stated you will be busy skinning and making burgers dame good advice. I use a 6.5x55mm loaded with a 120 grain bst works ever time.
    A sika stag in the rut is a very impressive animal and be prepared for buck fever. I would have no trouble taking a hind or pricket offhand but during the rut I always carry sticks.

    Let us know of your success
    .
    Regards,
    Glendine.

  8. #8
    I have to be honest and say that the majority (not all) of the big stags I have shot have been done so invariably when they have been on their own, with no hinds seen around them leading to thought of similar to fallow behaviour of holding a rutting area and waiting for hinds to pass through. Same stags seen in the same area over several weeks on occasion. They have still responded well to the call though.

    Interesting what Malc is saying about the big stags being generally finished by mid October in their part of the country. With us we will see them still rutting (both covering and holding hinds) into November (depending on weather/temperature I assume). Hence the reason we often have quite a variance of calf ages no doubt, with conversely some this year being seen very early on.

    I had a guest out over the weekend and saw absolutely heaps of hinds and calves. It took until the last morning of his visit to get a stag though, just a small spiker. We went for a drive around and saw two groups of deer, one being 6 in number and all big mature stagsfeeding and then running off with each other. The other group had a mix of hinds and stags, showing no sign of any rutting activity. Yet we heard stags whistling almost 2 weeks ago. Weather mild again though.

    As a side issue, I have used the call with success to bring stags into shot as late on as beginning of December but that is no doubt out of curiosity...
    Last edited by jamross65; 11-09-2012 at 12:30.

  9. #9
    this is one of the most educational threads I've read for a long time

  10. #10
    Craggy

    Just out of interest how far south west in the Borders are you? Not asking you to name your ground on the forum, just curious because of your mention of the sika/red hybrid.

    Cheers

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