This time last year I was expressing some concern about how the UK’s deer population was fairing amidst a number of storms that had ravaged much of the UK and in particular Scotland.

January 2016 Almanac image 555

(Whatever your cull plan, if you haven't already made some serious inroads, January is time to start upping your work rate) 

What a difference a year makes, this year has instead proven to be particularly mild and so far the storms that were a feature of last winter have as yet, failed to materialise with the tenacity that had gripped the UK during last year.  (NB -Typically as this goes to press storm Barbara is blowing through the north of the UK!)

This illustrates an interesting point around cull plans. It has long been held that estates should press on with the proposed cull irrespective of the weather, the reason being that the long term effect of weather and natural mortality should form part of any good long term strategy, and should not be tinkered with every time the wind blows up or there is a flurry of snow. 

It seems harsh to cull herds that are already depleted by harsh weather conditions, but it is a well established and proven rule that many large estates continue to abide by.

For the recreational stalker and those not required to undertake culls that amount to hundreds of deer, there is often the luxury of being able to undertake a more selective cull however, the principles of the more macro approach still ring true.  

Whatever your cull plan, if you haven’t already made some serious inroads, January is time to start upping your work rate. This is especially true in Scotland where the season for the hinds closes on the 16th February, offering approximately only six short weeks after the New Year hangover to get the job done.

Finally may I take this opportunity to thank all of our readers for their support during 2016 and may I wish you and your families a very merry Christmas and a happy new year! 

Film Xmas 2016 555

In this month’s film we take you from ‘Field to Plate’ and show you how to prepare your own joint of venison. To watch the film Follow this link to: short-films (Christmas 2016)

Editorpic150IN Season in England & Wales:  Roe Doe, Fallow Doe & Fallow Buck, Sika Stag & Sika Hind, Red Stag & Red Hind, CWD Buck & CWD Doe, Muntjac Buck & Muntjac Doe.

OFF Season in England & Wales:  Roebuck.

In Season in Scotland:  Fallow Buck, Fallow Doe, Roe Doe, Sika Hind, Red Hind.

Off Season in Scotland: Red Stag, Sika Stag & Roebuck 

(Peter Jones - Editor) 



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