GEORGE WALLACE says: I don’t like shooting the mother first, either. The youngster will probably hang around but for me ‘probably’ just isn’t good enough.

A fallow doe may suckle her fawn for as much as nine months, so when culling woodland deer I always try to shoot the calf or fawn first because I then know I am not leaving a little orphan to fend for itself.

Very often the doe will run only a few yards and look back for the fawn, so she can be culled at the same time but if she does not, then no harm is done and you can look for her another day.

I find this much more preferable to leaving an orphaned fawn to wander the winter woods without milk, without parental guidance and without a warm mum to snuggle up to at night. Call me an old softie if you wish, but that’s better than being a heartless bastard, I think.

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