First Stalk on a New Permission

I have picked up a new permission recently with the request of clearing out the rabbits. Its a 300 acre farm of which 100 acres of grazing paddocks are unusable due to the damage from Rabbits to the ground. I have been 3-4 times over the last two weeks and have already taken off 117 rabbits and haven't even made a dent in the numbers.

As part of the permission i have also been allowed to manage the deer on the farm. I'm still learning with all of this so will ask for advice when needed. The request from the farmer is to keep the numbers low but not to clear all of the deer. I have a mentor who has been taking me stalking and we are discussing the best plan of action on managing the numbers.

I had my first solo stalk on the farm this week and tracked down a lovely strong 4 point Stag with 2 Does. I had a safe shot but decided to leave him as he looked to be in good condition and hopefully will have passed on some good genes. There is a young Buck with a poor head that i would like to take off before the end of the month if i can catch up with him.

The land falls from the fells gradually into some woodland, before 130m of grassland before it meets the boundary that is formed by the South Tyne River. As i started out on the stalk i had moved to the furthest end of the farm on the down wind side and made my slowly to the edge of the woods. As i crossed through the wall and made my way down to an open grassy area i could see a deer approx 130-40m away working its way towards me. i moved into cover behind a wall and started glassing with the Bino's. I could see quickly it was a Doe and let her work her way towards me for 15 minutes. She got up to 15m away from me before she spooked and took off. The photo below is how close she came to me.

As i carried on along the open grassland i hugged the edge of the treeline before crossing down an embankment towards the river which gave enough cover so any potential deer couldn't see me and would hide my movement, and would allow me to quickly lean over and take a shot from the bipod with a solid back stop behind the shot. Over the next hour that's when i saw the Buck and 2 Does before the light started to fade fast.

At this point i changed over to fox patrol and successfully took a Fox at a little over 90 yards (measured on google maps) off the quad sticks using my Howa 1500 Stainless in .243 with a Zeiss Duralyt 3-9x50, and Nosler 90 Grain Ballistic tip homeload. I thoroughly enjoyed my evening and the farmer was happy that she had one less Fox to worry about.

Hopefully i will have a few more write ups to come. Even if they are Rabbiting related.1522DD3C-E5EE-4FD9-8DEF-99845680D66A.jpeg
 
There was loads near me when I moved into the village. I asked on of farmers if I could do some rabbit control as I had seen he had put lots of rabbit fencing in. He said no. So I never asked again. Until I saw the farmer with land other side of village having trouble with some lads riding motorbikes round his field. So I went and addressed them. And got them to clear off. I then asked if I could mange some of the rabbits on his land. He said yes no problem. Ended up with 300 acre and a woodland to look after. Fox, deer amd rabbits.
Happy days
 

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