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FMD takes its toll on stalking industry

At the time of going to press, the latest confirmed case of FMD was identified at a farm in Egham, Surrey.

Several contingency culls have been carried out at neighbouring farms, and concern is focused on the three species of wild deer (roe, fallow and muntjac) widely present as possible disease carriers in the surveillance zone.

“The whole thing is a disaster, we have lost substantial revenue.”

Last Monday, the British Deer Society announced that in the restricted zone (all of England) treated and untreated carcases of wild deer killed for human consumption can be moved off the premises of origin for movement to the game larder and/or a game handling establishment and from any premises through the usual wholesale/retail premises to the end consumer. They may not be exported. A separate call to DEFRA’s FMD hotline did not confirm the lifting of the movement restriction, however.

The stalking industry is feeling the brunt of the latest outbreak: “The whole thing is a disaster,” commented Jon Snowdon of Greenlee Deerstalking Holidays, in Northumberland. He added: “We have lost substantial revenue. We suffered badly in August because of the outbreak then and just when we were hoping to get started again, we are having to stop.”

The rest of this story will appear in the 20 September edition of Shooting Times.

For all the latest information on FMD and how it is affecting shooting visit Defra