Regular author James Schneider has been a vocal advocate of the importance of introducing young people to the exciting world of field sports and the importance of good deer management and conservation. This month he looks at the challenges of noise abatement. 

Venison in the Butchers

(Above; Job well done - wild, free ranging venison for the village)

I have cracked the code for dealing with my very enthusiastic 8-year-old son’s penchant for noise when accompanying me deer stalking – give him the ‘Buttolo’ during the Roe rut and let him at it! 

Mr. Fabulous himself began to accompany me over the past 12 months and was introduced to the joys of the field on various outings where he learned by doing, or better stated he learned what not to do by doing.  

Examples during our previous adventures include, interrupting a stalk upon a group of Roe on a crisp winter morning by smashing newly frozen puddles on the trail.  “Dad! The ice breaking sounds like gunshots!” a big smile on his face as the group of deer bolt for the wood. 

Massimo Buttalo in hand 300Instructions for silence would be given to wide-open eyes, only to be forgotten seconds later as the stalk began. Slow steps along the hedge, stopping to glass a ‘pricket’ ahead. The quiet then broken as he decides to hum a tune whilst walking behind me, clapping his hands together before his face in an attempt to kill an annoying fly.  It was nice to know he was happy and having a good time, as I watched the Fallow disappear at speed across the field.

(Left: Mr Fabulous himself - With Buttalo and Roe in hand) 

And then the summer peaked, and it was time to try calling for Roebuck.  With his current track record, I was understandably apprehensive to hand over the calling duties, but he’d heard enough and insisted he was ready. The irony of encouraging him to make noise whilst in the field was not lost on me. 

It turned out to be a great success, as he ably called in first only does during the early stages of the rut and then, like a future 'Jedi master' summoned not one, but two nice Roebuck on as many outings.  Notably the second one was a “murder buck” with a particularly nasty long single tine, which was a perfect cull buck and an important one to take off the ground. 

What a memorable way to enjoy the peak of this especially lovely summer, with a nice surprise, as my youngest starts to come into his own - and the joke is on me!  He did a great job calling and his success was an excellent confidence builder for one of our next generation of deer stalkers. And as if this were not enough, a final bonus, in addition to filling our freezer, I sold a carcass to our local butcher who, has since provided fresh, wild venison for the village and its many Summer BBQs.   

It is great fun to watch my son scan the meat counter when we walk by, to see if there is any left for sale…and nope! All sold out in record time! Smile and thumbs up from Big Ben the Butcher, and my beaming boy can’t stop talking about his next outing in a few weeks. 

Now if I can just get him to make his bed and brush his teeth all will be right in the world. 

James SchneiderTo read more from James on the subject of young people in deer stalking, follow this link: young-blood



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