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Thread: Scottish red stag season

  1. #1

    Scottish red stag season

    Dont know if this has been posted before but can anyone enlighten me on how the stag season up here is shorter than the rest of the british isles. They say there is more red up here than anywere else and have always wondered why its so short just as they get into the rut the season is over then you have to apply for an out of season licence to keep on top of them.....scott

  2. #2
    I was told it was something to do with in the "olden days" the posh MP's would come up to shoot stags but they had to return to parliament in late October.... No idea if its right or not but it's what I was told.

  3. #3
    The Reds stags start on the 1st of July when they are fit and finish at the rut when they are truly spent. English deer normally get a far easier time than there highland cousins and to keep moving large groups of stag to cull one will only end in the others dying of exhaustion

  4. #4
    Quote Originally Posted by bigscott270 View Post
    Dont know if this has been posted before but can anyone enlighten me on how the stag season up here is shorter than the rest of the british isles. They say there is more red up here than anywere else and have always wondered why its so short just as they get into the rut the season is over then you have to apply for an out of season licence to keep on top of them.....scott
    I would probably say that the seasons were put in place for 'hill beasts in years gone by' that an the fact that by the time the rut is on up north the weather is usually hellish..... except last year 11 degs!!! and was very late!

  5. #5
    Big Scot the reason there are to many would not be put down to stags but would be the females as they are the mothers of the next generation.

  6. #6
    Think back to post world war 2 when the seasons were introduced. Back then the landed gentry and the privilaged few who could afford were only intrested in one thing, stags. The longer the season was left open the larger the slaughter. Deer numbers were also not a prevelant then compared to what they are now, or where up till recently depending on which side of the fence you sit.

  7. #7
    6 pointer has it right on this one, after the rut they are in their worst condition about to face the winter they don't need to cope with the additional hassle of being hunted.

    As to the point made about numbers there are not too many stags in fact in some places its becoming difficult to find mature stags, if anything there is, is an unbalance between stag and hind numbers, its more hinds that need to be culled not more stags.

  8. #8
    Quote Originally Posted by bogtrotter View Post
    6 pointer has it right on this one, after the rut they are in their worst condition about to face the winter they don't need to cope with the additional hassle of being hunted.

    As to the point made about numbers there are not too many stags in fact in some places its becoming difficult to find mature stags, if anything there is, is an unbalance between stag and hind numbers, its more hinds that need to be culled not more stags.
    I'm affraid you are both wrong about why the scottish seasons dates vary from the english seasons dates. Although 6p is right about the current Scottish season reducing undue shooting pressure on recovering stags it does not explain why south of the border it is legal to shoot during this recovery period all the way through the rut to the end of April. You have stated a benefit but not answered the original qustion.

    The Scottish season was fixed during the same period in 1959 as that of the English season The season for hinds was based on welfare and the season for stags was based on cultral and economic factors and not grounded upon welfare. The legislation was founded apon and generated as a result of the reports of Lord Hansard of the same year as a result in declining deer numbers. Since the buisness was still wanted it was logical to make the season cover the prime time in the stags life, when antlers were at their best, condition was good and the stags were taken to the high grounds which were at the time (and still now) the most highly sought after.

    It is also completely natrual for hinds to out number stags as mortality rate during the first year is higher in males than females. I doubt/guarentee that there is certainly far more stags now than there was in the 50's and 60's.


    Sorry I'm not trying to be a dick but I know 100% categorically that I am correct.

  9. #9
    Quote Originally Posted by aliS View Post
    I'm affraid you are both wrong about why the scottish seasons dates vary from the english seasons dates. Although 6p is right about the current Scottish season reducing undue shooting pressure on recovering stags it does not explain why south of the border it is legal to shoot during this recovery period all the way through the rut to the end of April. You have stated a benefit but not answered the original qustion.

    The Scottish season was fixed during the same period in 1959 as that of the English season The season for hinds was based on welfare and the season for stags was based on cultral and economic factors and not grounded upon welfare. The legislation was founded apon and generated as a result of the reports of Lord Hansard of the same year as a result in declining deer numbers. Since the buisness was still wanted it was logical to make the season cover the prime time in the stags life, when antlers were at their best, condition was good and the stags were taken to the high grounds which were at the time (and still now) the most highly sought after.

    It is also completely natrual for hinds to out number stags as mortality rate during the first year is higher in males than females. I doubt/guarentee that there is certainly far more stags now than there was in the 50's and 60's.


    Sorry I'm not trying to be a dick but I know 100% categorically that I am correct.
    +1 on this just been reading about it in a journal dated 1960 , in regards to the countryside laws and regulations on JSTOR. Also however deer numbers as far as I know in "hill reds" has not in fact completely increased due to a number of very bad winters since the sixties other species of deer have thrived and increased dramatically with the added problem of Hybrids,

    Also there is an argument in regards to the practice of many Highland estates in the feeding of "hill deer" in winter months in which the stags take full advantage of that make it very unfair to cull reds during this period, but I think hat is more of a moral issue than a legal one.

    I love reading this forum n regards to issues like this as it prompts me to read and learn more when usually two paragraphs in a book makes me go to sleep lol

  10. #10
    Quote Originally Posted by Tulloch View Post
    "hill reds" has not in fact completely increased due to a number of very bad winters since the sixties other species of deer have thrived and increased dramatically with the added problem of Hybrids
    That's probably a pretty accurate assumption of the case in hand. I cannot comment on exact hill numbers as I read them but I'd easily beleive that there was a peak in past recent years and that numbers are indeed now down. By what percentage I have no idea. And for the right reasons? Well I'd not like to comment on that one. I'd need a really big tin hat!

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