So much nonsense written here,
and not all of it tongue in cheek.
Up here in the wilds of Scotland, the gamekeepers and Ghillies have been fighting Scottish Natural Heritage (SNH), a government Quango, for years about this. SNH want massive culls, not helped by so-called conservation groups like the John Muir Trust who have been buying up large tracts of land and then systematically attempting to cull all of the deer to protect their newly planted trees.
Also not helping are some of the new, usually foreign, landowners who have a Bambi fixation, and suspend deer shooting on estates that have had it for generations.
It's not about deer on the roads, they're few and far between anyway, but about land management, and the conflict of interests that this generates.
The Right to Roam Act, coupled with fanatical Ramblers, has curtailed a lot of deer shooting due to simple gun safety and the deer herds being scared off by Ramblers in Day-Glo clothing wandering across the hills. So, in recent years, some of the seasonal culling that was done has lost it's effectiveness. Coupled with the fact that deer have no natural predators (because we shot all of the wolves) other than man, some mild winters, and it's no wonder that the deer population is getting out of hand. Let's not forget that of all of the wild animals that we eat in this country, deer are the only ones that have no natural predators.
The kind of deer massacre alluded to by someone else is just what the Gamekeeprs and Ghillies have been trying to avoid, but Forrestry interests and others have to be" protected". The thought of such a massacre is just what the government has been trying to avoid, (just look at what happened over the proposed Badger cull) as they might lose votes. Chuck in a "Road Safety" element, and you get the likes of BRAKE on board.
Responsible Ghillies ensure that whoever is shooting can actually hit a target, and will test them on a range before they take them up into the hills on a stalk. They know full well that if a shooter (usually a paying guest) injures a deer, it is the Ghilie that has to track it down and despatch it, let alone the suffering for the animal. But paying guests help finance the running of the estate, and some landowners are getting less picky about who shoots on their land. It can all get ugly very quickly, and some animal rights groups are quite right to bring this to public attention. If an all out cull is called for, you can guarantee that there will be some cowboys out there with a firearms licence who will get in on the act, and this will attract the usual animal rights loonies with their video cameras to record all the sordid details of wounded and mutilated animals, there will be a public outcry and it will all have to stop.
Ten years down the line we will have to repeat the cycle.
I'm still waiting for the call to cull Urban foxes, now that one has attacked a baby.