PDS2 Deer Stalking Certificate

The Proficient Deer Stalker Level 2 (PDS2) is a deer-stalking-qualification that is designed to follow on from the foundation skills achieved during the PDS1.

The level 2 course consists of two elements, a taught element delivered via the ‘UK Shooting & Hunting Academy’, and an infield practical demonstration of skill, that is observed by a PDS Approved Verifier.

PDS2 Deer Stalking Qualification

The initial taught element elevates the candidate’s knowledge in key areas, that include subjects such as, an advanced understanding of firearms and optics, ageing and assessing the condition of deer, how to assess the suitability of land for stalking, how to carry out risk assessments, record keeping and deer management plans.

The practical assessment covers four key areas that include, the preparation and safe handling of equipment, competence at stalking and dispatching deer humanely and safely, the ability to be able to inspect and gralloch deer and hygienically handle shot deer in line with food standards agency guidelines.

Through both taught modules and classes and through a practical demonstration of skill, the PDS2 sets the 'gold standard' in UK deer stalking and is ideal for those who may wish to take on a deer stalking lease, apply for an open style firearms certificate, or simply for those that wish to advance their knowledge to new heights.

The PDS Level 2 is available to all PDS1 candidates by simply enrolling via the Shooting & Hunting Academy.

Proficient Deer Stalker Level 2 Syllabus

PDS2 Taught Element

The initial taught element includes the following:

Module 1. Advanced Firearms

Module 2. Deer Identification

Module 3. Deer Ecology

Module 4. Land Assessmen

Uptake is via a series of multiple choice exams. In total the candidate must complete 70 questions and achieve a pass mark of 80% before continuing to the practical skills assessment. 

PDS2 Practical Assessment

The practical assessment requires that the candidate demonstrate on two occasions, their infield proficiency, to the satisfaction of an Approved Verifier, in four key areas that include:

Element 1. Prepare and safely handle suitable equipment ammunition and firearms.

Element 2. Stalk and dispatch a deer safely and successfully.

Element 3. Inspect and gralloch a shot deer.

Element 4. The ability to hygienically extract, transport and store a shot deer in line with FSA guidelines as set out in the Hunting Academy Large Game Meat Hygiene Course.

How it Works

Candidates that have completed the PDS1 will be invited to achieve the Level 2.

Candidates enrol and complete the taught element of the PDS2 online via the ‘Shooting & Hunting Academy’ in a similar format as the PDS1.

Having successfully completed the taught element and upon successfully passing the exams, candidates are invited to download and print off a PDS2 Logbook via the Shooting & Hunting Academy.

Candidates then approach an ‘Approved Verifier’ and hand their logbook to their chosen AV for completion of the portfolio once the performance criteria have successfully been achieved.

The Logbook is then sent to CDS head office by the candidate for internal verification and issuing of the certificate.

If you have completed the Proficient Deer Stalker Certificate Level 1 you may enrol on the Proficient Deer Stalker Level 2 by following this link: proficient-deer-stalker-certificate-level-2


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