[cs_content][cs_section parallax=”false” style=”margin: 0px;padding: 45px 0px;”][cs_row inner_container=”false” marginless_columns=”false” style=”margin: 0px auto;padding: 0px;”][cs_column fade=”false” fade_animation=”in” fade_animation_offset=”45px” fade_duration=”750″ type=”1/1″ style=”padding: 0px;”][x_custom_headline level=”h2″ looks_like=”h3″ accent=”true” style=”margin-top:10px;margin-bottom:20px;”]Deer Hunting[/x_custom_headline][cs_text]Deer hunting is a very popular pass time especially during the roar/rut season which usually occurs during the autumn months across Australia. There are six members of the deer family wild in Australia and it is estimated that around 85% of these are descendants of the animals originally imported into Australia for society hunting properties. Of the six deer species there are 3 main members hunted in Australian bushland for venison or trophies, these are Sambar, Fallow and Red deer. With smaller numbers of Chital or Cheetal (Axis axis), Rusa and Hog found across Australia. It is estimated that the wild deer population in Australia is around 200,000 in 218 areas spread across all the States and territories. With most of these populations scatter throughout the South Eastern states and territories.
The feral/wild deer populations increased markedly after the collapse of commercial deer farming in the 1970s and 1990s when a lot of deer were illegally released and this is responsible for 90 percent of the current wild deer populations in Australia.
Some of the state’s and territories consider feral deer as a pest. Victoria and New South Wales have the largest deer populations and manage deer primarily for recreational hunters. These states also give deer a full or partial protection. This goes against environmental legislation in Victoria and New South Wales that states that deer (Sambar) threaten the process of biodiversity. In some areas it has been suggested that fences be used to protect plant species against deer populations.
Very little is been done to manage the abundance and growth of deer populations across Australia or reduce the environmental impact of their grazing of both native vegetation or agricultural pastures.[/cs_text][x_line style=”border-top-width: 1px;”][x_raw_content]
The best time to hunt Fallow deer in Australia is during the rut or main mating period which usually occurs around the middle of April and lasts around three weeks this is dependent on the state and seasonal conditions.
Fallow deer are a herd animal inhabiting semi-open scrub land, and are also known to graze pastures that are close to cover. This is where interactions with agricultural occur where a property includes bushland or is in close proximity to state parks.[/cs_text][x_custom_headline level=”h2″ looks_like=”h4″ accent=”true” style=”margin-top:10px;margin-bottom:20px;”]Red Deer[/x_custom_headline][cs_text]Red deer were introduced into Australia from England in 1860, there were just 6 red deer sent to Werribee Park in Victoria. From there they were released in Queensland in 1873, in to New South Wales in 1886, into Western Australia in 1873.
Red deer are listed on the world’s worst invasive alien species, so where ever a population is established they will cause damage to the natural environment. As they travel across habitats so this environment can be cultivated pastures/crops or native flora. They prefer open grassy glades in forests. They also poses risk to vehicles and humans.
Red deer are the larger of the deer family found in Australia, with a stag standing up to 120cm at the shoulder and weighing up to 220kg and hinds around 90 cm weighing up to 180 kg.[/cs_text][x_custom_headline level=”h2″ looks_like=”h4″ accent=”true” style=”margin-top:10px;margin-bottom:20px;”]Sambar Deer[/x_custom_headline][cs_text]Sambar deer are the prevalent deer hunted in Australia, they were introduced from India, Ceylon and Malaysia in the 1860s.Sambar are a solitary animal by nature and are usually found in inhabit difficult terrain.
They can be identified by their uniform dark brown with ginger and cream under parts. A mature stag can stand up to 130 cm at the shoulder and weighing up to 230kg. The hinds are smaller and are 110 cm at the shoulder and weighing up to 180 kg. The antlers are usually six tined ( or three on either side) are heavy, and may reach greater than 30 cm.
It is estimated that 41000 deer shot in Victoria per year around 34,000 are Sambar. [/cs_text][x_line style=”border-top-width: 1px;”][x_raw_content]
It is said that the current wild deer populations only occupy a fraction of the potential areas of Australia they could inhabit especially in Northern Australia. This with the escapes from properties and translocation has an impact of the growing numbers of wild deer in Australia. [/cs_text][x_line style=”border-top-width: 1px;”][x_raw_content]
Always check with state authorities to ensure you remain within current regulations. This is also true with hunting seasons and other regulations imposed on hunters across the state’s with some requiring game hunting licences. While farmers require permits to cull deer that are impacting on their properties.
The most important time to hunt deer is during the rut/roar when the stags/bucks are most vocal, and can be traced by calling out to them, this is also the time when both males and females are in herds together. So the choice of taking a stag for a trophy or getting a hind for the venison.[/cs_text][x_line style=”border-top-width: 1px;”][x_raw_content]
As when shooting deer always clearly identify your target before taking aim. When hunting in dense scrub for safety reasons it is advised not to wear camo, and where something that stands out from the surroundings, as meaning deer are shot at distance so being able to identify the target through a scope gets difficult. So make sure you can be visible to other hunters as accidents do happen.
Before heading out wild deer hunting make sure you have a current firearm licence and understand the current states regulations and seasons.