rifle shooting

Tips to improve your rifle shooting and markmanship

As we drift towards the summer, most game seasons have closed. Your stalking kit has been cleaned and stowed away, and you’ll likely see more venison on the barbecue than under a cross-hair for the next few months. Shooting is a perishable skill We all have a responsibility to be…

English and Welsh roe review 2017

English and Welsh roe review 2017 and other species

The CIC’s trophy measuring system has had another good year. Newly qualified UK measurers got into their stride throughout 2017 at home and at shows around the country. And senior members of the UK Trophy Evaluation Board (TEB) attended the International TEB in Budapest last September to assess, along with…

roe head

Scottish roe review 2017

With a score of 
175.93, K. Mehl’s Aberdeenshire trophy took top honours for Scotland in 2017, maintaining that county’s place as one of the country’s great roe hunting territories. However, this year it was eclipsed, numerically at least, in the top 10 heads by its principal competitors, Angus, Fife and…

deer stalking qualifications

Should deer stalkers have to be qualified?

Soon after I accepted my first invitation to shoot in Germany, a small package arrived. Inside were the instructions and forms required before I would be allowed to join the shoot. These included letters proving insurance, 
in both English and German, passport photos, copies of a firearms licence and a…

Roe deer hunting

Roe deer hunting – the five minute cull

We are in the thick of the doe season as I write and trying to catch up the numbers on one estate. Parts of this ground can be quite disturbed with walkers and people enjoying time in the woodland. It also has two good shoots that run from November to…

Do we rely on scopes too much?

Do we rely on scopes too much?

I once went out on the hill with an old stalker who bemoaned the use of bipods. This struck me as odd, because I would have thought using bipods meant fewer missed shots and, more importantly, fewer wounded beasts. But according to him, in using a bipod, 
his guests tended…

Creedmoor 6.5 size comparison

The 6.5mm Creedmoor round – why stalkers are talking about it

Q: I keep hearing about a new round called the 6.5mm Creedmoor and friends say it 
is the best cartridge for deer. 
Is that true? A: The 6.5 Creedmoor is one 
of the new wave of cartridges designed to get the best possible ballistics from an efficient case design. The…

Zeiss Conquest V6 scope

The new ZEISS Conquest V6 scope on test

Low light conditions sort out the men from the boys when it comes to optics. Budget scopes – while offering reasonable image quality in good light conditions – often become useless when the light starts to fade. The mid-range new ZEISS Conquest V6 2 – 12 x 50 scope boasts…


We review the best scopes for under £350 – which was the winner?

The 3-12x56mm scope, with its good range of magnification settings and 56mm objective lens size allowing plenty of light to enter the scope for low-light situations, 
is ideal for a wide range of hunting and target situations, whether that be vermin control, foxing or deer management. Three of the four…

deerstalking male deer

Do I need a qualification to stalk?

A: The straightforward answer is that you do not require a formal qualification to go stalking. While many people who stalk have undertaken training and successfully completed the DSC at level 1 and level 2, there are many who stalk who have not. Knowledge of a wide range of topics Stalking is a complex sport, requiring skills,…

English and Welsh roe review 2016

UK other species review 2016

There is often debate among the UK hunting fraternity about the status of introduced species and the application of the CIC formulae to them. This comes from the concern as to whether introduced ungulates are truly wild in nature or because of the way man has manipulated their existence, they…

taking a shot

When should you take the shot?

  Leaving aside the stalking skill, knowledge of the quarry, correct rifle mount, stability of position, breath control and all the other disciplines needed for an accurate shot, what do I wait for in those few seconds before the message is despatched to squeeze the trigger? Period of calm With the scope crosshairs on the target,…

English and Welsh roe review 2016

English and Welsh roe review 2016

One of the things that I enjoy about measuring trophies for the CIC is when a hunter, either because he’s just shot something bigger than normal or has been encouraged by a friend to have a head assessed, finds that with little understanding of the measuring process he ends up…

English and Welsh roe review 2016

Scottish roe review 2016

Roebuck seasons come and go, remembered by stalkers for many reasons — a first buck, a trophy scored, an atypical animal, a new rifle or permission or, for very few, the trophy of a lifetime. It has been said on many occasions that, in terms of the quality of its roe,…


Ibex stalking in the Spanish Gredos Mountains

I have just returned from the most amazing, challenging, physically testing, at times frightening and most enjoyable hunting experience of my life, bar none. Through a good friend, David Pantlin, I had been invited to hunt Iberian ibex on an estate in the Gredos Mountains, 200km west of Madrid in Spain. I have often flown over the mountains…

deer stalkers

Steps to a successful stalk

In the first part of this feature – How to think like a deer –  I looked at why considering how a deer uses its senses, and how this can impact on its behaviours, can help to make you a successful stalker. So, bearing this in mind, how can this inform your stalking in practice? Every…

red deer

In praise of the Scottish red deer

There can be a bit of head scratching as to what is a native Scottish red deer. It is not entirely straightforward and over the years has been further confused by man’s interference, “improving” the local population by adding genes to provide sport and in doing so diluting the purity of the native animal. Plus, of course, red deer…