A new Government survey has described the destructive capabilities of Britain?s ever-increasing deer population, and called for landowners to work together to combat the problem.

The results of the survey, which examined browse damage and impact on ground flora, were made public in a presentation given by Natural England?s Dr Emma Goldberg at last week?s annual meeting of the British Ecological Society.

Speaking at the meeting, Dr Goldberg said: ?Deer numbers have certainly been rising for the past 40 years, and we believe that they are higher now than they have ever been. The ecological knock-on affect has a direct impact on plants such as hazel, privet and rarer shrubs which may get browsed out of the woodland altogether.

?This has yet another knock-on impact for other species, such as dormice or ground-nesting birds. Even butterflies can be affected because the shrub layer provides a nectar source.?

The rest of this article appears in the 28th September issue of Shooting Times.

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