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Thread: There back...

  1. #1

    There back...

    Sorry title should be THEY'RE BACK.
    I posted earlier this year asking for sightings of the missing fallow from North Herts. Well I'm happy to report that since to 1st of April the fallow does have returned on mass. Over the past week we've seen a group of 40+ in the middle of the rape fields (well at least what should be rape). This will please the farmers no end I'm sure.
    I've been involved in deer stalking for nearly 10 years and during this whole time I've had two labs that Have been used for rough (I stress rough) shooting. And over the past few years my youngest dog, now 10, has been picking up on a local shoot. Because most if not all of my early deer shooting was done from high seats and neither were what you would call steady. The dogs never came out or had any training on deer.
    Well sadly last week we lost my oldest dog, my best friend, Whisper the chocolate lab. This has left both me and my other dog Berry a bit lost. As a result the last few times I've been out deer stalking I've taken him with me. Just for the company and with no expectations other than he might decide that the pheasants are runners he needs to chase down probably just at the wrong moment.
    So I went out yesterday morning and decided to sit against a tree on the edge of a spiny on the opposite side of a field where we have a high seat. From the seat and edge of the spiny you can see he whole face of a decent sized wood and of late the deer have been coming out nearer the spiny.
    We were in position before dawn and having got my self comfortable. I tried to get berry to settle next to me.
    By the time the dawn had broken it seemed the every five minutes I was having to tell him to lay down and stay. I can honestly say I was starting to get cheesed off when I turned and saw that he was sitting bolt upright staring off behind me. He was shaking and flicking his gaze between me and something behind me. I though bloody pheasants. I slowly turned around to see a muntjac about 40m away starring the dog down. Slowly picked up my rifle and bang it was down.
    Well berry looked at me as if to say now what dad. I walked him over the the muntjac and having circled it a couple of times I picked it up at which point he decided a game of tug of war was in the offing.
    The deer grallocked we went for a short stalk before returning to the spiny. It was such a nice morning and it was still early so I decided we'd have another 20 minutes there and see what was moving about.
    Well I was about to call it a mornin when I noticed movement in he middle of the field. A lone fallow running up the field. Usually an indication that its a buck. Bins up looking looking, yes it's a young buck. Rifle up oi oi OI! It stops bang "s!!t". Good reaction but through he scope I see what looks like a cloud of pins. I'm thinking brisket shot I've gone low. My heart sank as it disappeared into the wood.
    Went to where I thought it was when I shot and couldn't find anything. Went to the Edge of he wood were it went in and again nothing. Looked to see where he dog was in saw him sniffing around at the edge of the wood 5m away. Went to see what it was that had his attention and saw blood. Lots of blood, a lot more than I expected. So I thought we'll why not "get on then Berry". And off he went. I saw him go into the wood about 20 - 30 metres a disappear coming back towards me. Oh we'll it was worth a try now where's that dog. I walked in over the bank and the was Berry sniffing a very dead fallow buck.
    A very happy man. A great morning tinged with the recent loss of a best friend and the regret that I hadn't got into he habit of taking one of my dogs out with me all the time.
    I've definitely got myself a new stalking companion.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails image.jpg  
    Last edited by Win Mod 70; 15-04-2013 at 19:26.

  2. #2
    Excellent on all counts, shame about the circumstances mind.
    Owning a gun or knife and not using it, is akin to not sleeping with your girlfriend to keep her neat and tidy for the next bloke.

  3. #3
    There Back Updated !

    Been out a few times over the past few weeks without the dog, as I was planning to sit up a high seat. Strangly enough I blanked. Still saw loads but nothing in range. Having had a couple of days on the South Coast diving (one of my other passions) and seen loads of deer at the side of the road off both the M4 and M5, I decided that as the weather was nice and I had the day off I'd give it one last go on the 30th for the fallow.

    Up at silly o'c;lock and arrived on my ground just as the dawn was breaking on a lovely morning. Jacket on, bins round neck, rangefinder in pocket, sticks, ammo, bolt, rifle and mod? I'd left the mod at home st! Now I know that the rifle shoots 2-3 inches off without the mod and not enough time to get home and back again so gun locked away and bolt and ammo in pocket "lets go dog". And off we went for a walk around the boundry. An hour or so later I was back at the vehicle and we headed for home. Insult to injury the fallow were standing at the side of the road as I pulled out of the farm.

    Got home with a very happy dog who had been out for a walk and was having breakfast all before 7 am. And to a perplexed wife who wanted to know why I was home so early. I explained over a cup of tea what I had done and to my suprise she said "I suppose you'll be going out this evening then". Well I wasn't going to argue with her and after she went off to work and my daughter to school I started on my list of jobs which I was finishing just as she got home. A quick tea with the family and off I set, ensuring that I had everything with me this time.

    As I pulled onto the farm i could see a small group of fallow on the fare side of the farm, who had also spotted my truck. They decided they didn't like the look of me and were off. I decided on a longer walk in so as not to wind the same wood as the scene of mine and Berry's last sucsessful outing and in no time we were settled on the edge of the spinny watching the world go by. A pair of foxes caught Berry's attention just as a Muntjac buck appeared off the my left. With one eye on the muntjac, the other of the foxes and my foot on Berry's lead I raised the rifle and rested it against the truck of a tree. My movement had been spotted by the nearest fox but not the buck who turned presenting a perfect neck shot at around 40 yards. Bang he was down. It was still relatively early and loads of light left so I decide to sit tight and see what happened next.

    After another 20 minutes I was getting a bit of cramp in my legs so decided on a leg stretch. Well i stood up, took two steps towards the other side of the spinny and as I looked right I could see a fallow buck sontering up the hedge line towards us. Grabbed the dog and ducked down behind a good sized tree. I could just see the buck who had stoped and was trying to see what we were. Unbeknown to me Berry's back end was sticking out the other side of the tree with his tail going ten to the dozen. The buck wasn't happy and started to trot forward but stopped level with me in a gap through the wood only 50 odd yards away. Bang, good reaction and off he ran into the adjoining wheat feild. He wend down, got up ran a bit further and then fell over dead.

    By now Berry was beside himself with excitment so i made a fuss of him and gave it 5 minutes before sending him off to find the muntjac. Head down tail going and he sented into the muntjac. I could see the fallow out in the field but wanted to see what the dog would do. Well he didn't even seem to notice the deer but was head down following the obvious route through the crop. He stopped at each point where the deer had stopped only noticing the deer when he was nearly on top of it. He wasn't very keen on getting to close but that doesn't worry me at all.

    Well previously I thought I'd just found myself a stalking companion. I think in fact I have a lucky charm.

  4. #4
    Sounds like the evening made up for the morning.

  5. #5
    Great write up, and sounds like Berry is indeed a lucky charm.

    I have a lab too, which is a bit of an idiot. He usually comes stalking with me but sits in the car (not in this weather though). I'd never trained him on deer or blood or anything like that. He's got an excellent nose on him (great at picking up albeit not exactly "well mannered") and so i always thought "just in case". I was out a few months ago stalking and shot a muntie that ran into a dense thicket, it was too thick to see through or into, it was dusk and i was starting to doubt my shot (even though there was blood and pins). Got the dog out the car and took him to the shot site, told him to "get on" and within 5 seconds he was trying to drag it out the thicket. It would be fair to say i would have "lost" it without him even though it had only run about 20m before dropping dead.

    Just goes to show an "untrained" dog with a good nose is better than no dog, especially if they can provide company for you too. SOunds like Berry will be a good stalking friend to have!

    Nice one.

  6. #6
    Berry looking particularly smug and confident.

    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails image.jpg  

  7. #7
    Couple of great outings

  8. #8
    Sorry about the loss of your old dog, but it sounds like you have the makings of another good deer dog. Good luck to both of you for the future.


    All grades of deer stalkers/hunters in the UK and overseas catered for. Level 2 DMQ signing off available. Over 30 years experience in the stalking/hunting industry. For friendly and professional help go to


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