February - Deer Stalkers Almanac
- Thursday, 29 January 2015
Peter Jones takes a look at the month ahead.
Before I begin I’d be grateful if you would indulge us in a quick word of self congratulation. Since the launch of County Deer Stalking as an online magazine, we are delighted to announce that we have now passed the impressive milestone of having achieved over 100-000 unique visitors!
To mark this achievement we are again set to improve the website. At the click of a mouse visitors will soon be able to access a new UK Directory of Stalking and Deer Stalking Equipment providers.
This important change will provide improved accessibility to those who want to ‘Go deer stalking’ in their chosen area. It will also provide an easily accessible index of deer stalking equipment suppliers.
What is more, to further mark the occasion, I am hugely excited to announce that we are soon set to institute the ‘Capreolus Club’, a unique and exciting new members club designed exclusively for deer stalkers and hunters of Large Game... watch this space!
By making these improvements we hope to further cement our position as ‘the’ go to website for all things deer stalking.
On to our look at the month ahead.
Whilst the weather during February can broadly be described as ‘more of the same’ there are a few notable features of the month ahead. Most notable of these occur on the 15th February, which in Scotland marks the last day of the season for Red & Sika Hinds and Fallow Doe. With only Fallow Buck and Roe Doe now in season north of the border, the majority of stalking in Scotland will now cease.
Another feature of February, notable by its absence, is that of Game shooting. With the season for driven shooting coming to an end on the 1st February, and with most game keepers now able to breathe a well deserved sigh of relief, deer stalkers can once again claim the woods for themselves. In some areas where deer managers have been denied access for fear of upsetting the birds, this will result in a degree of urgency to achieve a suitable cull of females in an already short season.
Whilst amongst the herding species of deer divisions will continue to be made on a gender basis, Roe will remain in mixed family groups. The mature Roe Buck will also now appear advanced in velvet. Be advised however, it is common place to assume, when one sees the mature Roe Buck in antler, that this is true of all Roe Buck. This is not the case, remember, the buck fawns will be casting their ‘buttons’ during February and so will be devoid of antler for some weeks before re growing their first simple set of antlers in time for the start of the buck season.
A final word about this month’s film which features some of the highlights of the 2014 calendar and can be accessed via our short-films page: we hope you enjoy!
IN Season in England & Wales: Roe Does, Fallow Does & Fallow Buck, Sika Stags & Sika Hinds, Red Stags & Red Hinds, CWD Bucks & CWD Does, Muntjac Buck & Muntjac Does.
Off Season in England & Wales: Roe Buck.
In Season in Scotland: Sika Hinds, Red Hinds and Fallow Does until 15th Feb only. Fallow Buck & Roe Does remain in season throughout February.
Off Season in Scotland: Red Stags, Sika Stags & Roe Buck. Also Red & Sika Hinds and Fallow Does from 16th February.